In its latest update the South African cabinet announced that it has approved that the Merchant Shipping Amendment Bill, 2014 be tabled in Parliament.
The statement said the Bill aims to amend the Merchant Shipping Act, No. 57 of 1951. It noted that the Act predates the Constitution and thus it is imperative to align it to the values and provisions of the Constitution and also to align to current International Conventions.
“The Amendment Bill also gives effect to the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 and the Work in Fishing Convention, 2007. Both Conventions were adopted by the United Nations International Labour Organisation.”
“The alignment of domestic legislation to the Conventions provides South Africa with a global instrument to ensure global protection to the rights of seafarers and decent working and living conditions. This will enable South Africa to intervene in cases where foreign ships entering our ports have contravened the rights of seafarers.”
Implementation of the Bill will also improve the operations and image of the maritime industry, which is imperative for international trade and the international economy.”