The International Transport Workers Federation, ITF, lists 32 nations that have so-called flags of convenience.
The basic criterion for a flag of convenience is when a ship sails under the flag of another country than that of the owner. In addition, a flag of convenience is judged on the following criteria:
- The number of foreign ships in the register.
- The capacity and willingness on the part of the flag nation to ensure that minimum requirements of social standards are fulfilled.
- Compliance with ILO conventions.
- Safety, work environment and living environment onboard.
As early as the World Congress in Oslo in 1948, the ITF started its campaign against flags of convenience. The overall goal is to completely abolish flags of convenience as well as to create effective rules and regulations for the shipping industry and prevent the exploitation of seamen.