From the perspective of Polish companies operating in ship management, current governmental solutions with regard to the regulation of taxes and insurance for sailors will allow our naval personnel to regain the advantage on the international market. The current situation does not look very well.
Not so long ago - in 2014, the basic and most important advantage of Polish sailors was their, i.e. captains’, first engineers’ and chief mates’, high qualifications and experience in international shipping. They were our primary bargaining chip when it comes to hip management. The reason for it was not only their high qualifications, but also the fact that other countries, in particular in Western Europe, lack this kind of staff. Graduates of technical courses, who do not possess any experience in working on sea yet, are being prepared to work in ship management, e.g. as technical superintendents; this raises serious doubts as to the quality of their work or understanding of what is happening on the ship. Such knowledge is normal for experienced personnel.
“It appears that we do not have the advantage in this respect any more.The basic problem is a noticeable retreat from naval personnel from Europe to the one from Far East. When it comes to Europe, we can observe retreat from Poland,” says Piotr Masny, Vice President of the Polish Ship Managers’ Association.
Therefore, according to him, within the next 5 years a market for Polish seaman recruits will have been closed, no one will be interested in them as the offer of their services is growing smaller. It results from the overproduction of seaman recruits in the world as well as competition from Far East.
A positive solution, which is favourable for the general recognizability of Poland as the shipping centre, would be acting in favour of reclaiming Polish ships. This would promote our country as a place where shipping activities are conducted, which has human resources, both for shipyards and projects.
“If foreign shipowners receive no information from a given country, it means to them that nothing is happening there. Therefore, we need an impetus, which will make them interested in checking out what is happening here and that these solutions are favorable for them,” Piotr Masny emphasizes.
One of the panels at the Maritime Economy Forum Gdynia 2018 shall be dedicated to ship management.
Article developed in cooperation with "Namiary na Morze i Handel" magazine.
Phot. source: T. Urbaniak/Port of Gdynia Authority S.A.