Maritime Skills Commission - Seafarer Cadet Review Report - June 2021
The Seafarer Cadet Training Review came at a request from the Maritime Minister in the Maritime Skills Commission's Tasking Letter.
A Working Group of Commissioners and Chaired by Brian Johnson, Chief Executive , Maritime and Coastguard Agency, was established because numbers of UK Merchant Navy officers being trained employed has seen a steady decline over several decades. Although the training offered in the UK is seen as good by the rest of the world, it is becoming out-dated and has been slow to adapt to the needs of the Maritime industry.
This report contains the recommendations of the Cadet Training Group of the Maritime Skills Commission. Implementation of these recommendations will enable a growing gap between the international shipping sector’s skills requirements for new officers and the training and education received by cadets to be closed.
Technology change in shipping, driven by decarbonisation and technology innovation, will increase this skills gap over the next 10-15 years. The roles in shipping will change and the nature of the interface between people and machines will evolve substantially.
The propulsion options being considered for deep sea shipping will bring a need for a step change in safety management in the sector – serious accidents resulting from poor operation of ships utilising these fuels will have immediate disastrous consequences some considerable distance from the ship. This transition to behavioural safety can only happen through skilled leadership.
Providing that the UK can now rapidly evolve how its seafaring officers are educated and trained, will provide an opportunity for the UK to supply the growing demand for officers with differentiated leadership and technical skills. This will create well paid employment with the knock-on benefits to the UK economy.
The development of a pipeline of officers with these increasingly important skills will be of importance in ensuring that the UK delivers the ambitions set out within the Maritime 2050 strategy in the arenas of autonomy and decarbonisation and in ensuring that the maritime services sector fulfills its future potential.
Refreshing the seafarer training system in the UK will allow the well-regarded UK maritime training sector to strengthen its position in the international education arena, pulling foreign income into the UK.