MLC will come into force when it has been ratified by 30 countries, representing 33% of the world’s trade tonnage.
Five countries who have signed so far: Bahamas, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Panama and Norway. The tonnage quota is thus fulfilled.
ILO counts on the convention coming into force in 2011.
The tonnage quota is already filled and after another 25 countries have ratified it, the International Labour Organisation’s maritime Super Convention will come into force.
– It will have far-reaching effects for seafarers internationally, says Johan Franson, who is leading the Swedish investigation of the convention.
Despite the thick files containing the convention, it does not contain many new items. It is basically a summary of earlier agreements (39 conventions, one protocol and around thirty recommendations) on seafarer’s working conditions that the UN has ratified since its inception in 1920. But many people still believe that the super Convention will really make a difference and improve working conditions for seafarers.
– What is special about this Convention is that when it comes into force, it will apply to all countries flagging ships, even those that have not ratified the Convention, explains the managing director of the Swedish Ship Officers’ Association, Christer Lindvall.
Five countries have ratified it so far. When Liberia, with the world’s largest shipping register corresponding to about a quarter of the world’s merchant tonnage, signed in February this year the tonnage quota for coming into force was fulfilled. An investigation is underway in Sweden at the moment to check whether there are any obstacles to ratification.
– In the current situation I cannot foresee any reasons why Sweden will not be able to sign it. But there are a number of issues that need to be addressed first, says Johan Franson.