Jobs, Skills and the Future

Jobs, Skills, Future logo
This theme is central to everything the Union stands for — protecting members’ current jobs, ensuring they have the skills to remain competitive, and safeguarding the industry for future generations.

The Jobs, Skills and the Future campaign will have both proactive and reactive elements and various objectives which come under one banner of safeguarding the industry. A number of aims relate to large-scale issues the Union would like to see addressed and which will be worked upon in a proactive manner. However, it is also hoped that members will use the umbrella theme of this campaign to raise awareness of issues within their own workplaces and react to them as they occur.

This campaign will address European issues including the provisions of the EU state aid guidelines; increased investment in employment and training of EU seafarers and inland waterways transport personnel.

It will promote cabotage as a mechanism to support the employment of European seafarers with the ideal of an EU version of the USA Jones Act in the future and defend against trade agreements which seek to remove the employment rights of seafarers.

There will also be campaign targets to address specific needs in the three branches which cover the training and employment of seafarers and inland waterways boatmen in each country, improving permitted fiscal support for those working in the industry and ensuring that the industry flourishes in the future.


Jobs, Skills, and the Future is a four-year umbrella campaign and therefore the strategies will depend of the specific objectives in each sector or country. The campaign will be positive, calling for measures to secure the future of the industry through the safeguarding of jobs, the protection of the skills base and the availability of quality, affordable training, and promoting the industry to the next generation and general public. Elements of campaign activity will become more aggressive where there is a need.

The campaign will seek to have Jobs, Skills and the Future adopted as the theme for Branch Meetings in the 2016-2019 period, building activity and interest in local issues. It will also be the Union’s theme for maritime ‘days’ in 2016 including day of the seafarer, world maritime day and merchant navy day and the equivalents in the Netherlands and Switzerland, as these are platforms to promote the industry to the public.

Activity will vary by branch.


The Union will campaign for an improvement in the training of cadets by recognising employers’ quality of training and recruitment.

The campaign will also call for wide-ranging improvements to the industry through a ten point charter for industry and government to save the UK’s maritime skills.
There will be a strong focus of activities in the North Sea offshore sector where there has been, and will continue to be, large job losses related to the fall in oil prices. Activity will be alongside the STUC and will be targeted at preserving the unique skillset of seafarers operating in the North Sea.


The campaign in Switzerland will focus on the future of Basel as a maritime hub. This major inland waterways port is under threat from housing developers and Nautilus will join calls from port workers and users to protect and expand the port. Nautilus will campaign for a reverse in the trend for traffic to move from the waterways on to the roads.

The Union will also work with tripartite groups to improve the terms and conditions of Rhine workers. It will campaign for Europe-wide system of training, certification and watch keeping for boatmen.


The campaign in the Netherlands will look at how technology will change the future of the industry and the implications this will have on jobs and skills requirements, especially the impact on young people.

It will aim to ensure that all Dutch maritime students who want to go to sea continue to be able to secure a berth on ships in the Dutch maritime industry, with a specific focus on the future of internships.