21.03.2019

Working conditions on board M/VGeopark Venus will become transparent

Last month the M/VGeopark Venus operated in accordance with the collective agreement signed with a yellow trade union. The captain of the ship avoided contacts with ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) Inspectors. Likely, it was explained by the fact the employer  was saving on crew wages. Now the situation is changing: the company Cosmo Sealand is negotiating a concluding the ITF approved  collective bargaining agreement aiming to provide decent working conditions for crew.  

The M/VGeopark Venus is under the coal loading at the port of Nakhodka. The Inspectors of the Far Eastern Territorial Organization of the Seafarers' Union of Russia  have visited the ship.  Nikolai Sukhanov, the Chairman of the SUR FETO, told about that visit: Our first visit on board this ship was in February of 2018. Then the captain was rather  reluctant to communicate with the SUR representatives and refused to show any documents because of the express prohibition of the Japanese shipowner. Today the captain has welcomed the Inspectors on board and showed individual contracts of employment of the crew members. All 19 crew members are the citizens of Indonesia. The AB's basic wage is $592, the captain's basic wage is  $6000. The latter has explained that his previous refusal to show the documents was due to the availability  on board the ship of the agreement with the yellow trade union, which sheltered itself  behind the name of the affiliated to ITF Indonesian seafarers union (KPI), so the shipping company was trying to conceal the agreement.

Let us recall the truth has become known following the visit another vessel owned by the company Cosmo Sealand. During the inspection on board the M/V Crystal Jade  the  Inspectors of Nakhodka PSC found out a forged document. The KPI confirmed that the agreement was illegal.  

The captain of the M/V Geopark Venus has added that the shipowner is negotiating the All Japan Seamen's Union  on the signing the ITF collective bargaining agreement for  three Panama-flagged vessels: Permata, Geopark Venus and Crystal Jade.

Before leaving the ship, the SUR FETO Inspectors answered the seafarers' questions and told about risks connected with work on FOC-vessels and benefits implied by the ITF approved collective agreement. Upon returning at office, the Union's experts sent to the Japanese shipowner the repeated notice about the need to sign the ITF collective agreement in the short time. Fusao Ohori,  ITF Coordinator  in Japan, and Dewa Nyoman Budiasa,  director general of Indonesian seafarers union, also monitor the situation. 

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