Challenges in International Convention on the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Compliance: A case study of the South African Maritime Education and Training System
Author Yamkela Nhleko
Affiliations: ESD Coordinator, EThekwini Maritime Cluster
Source: South African Journal of Maritime Education and Training, Volume 2 Issue 1, p. 121-131
Maritime education and training (MET) has been instrumental in the development of seafarers in South Africa and internationally. As a result, different MET systems are used to not only produce eligible maritime professionals but to ensure that they comply with the requirements of the International Convention on the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) 1978, as amended in Manila. Some of the challenges in MET prove not to be exclusive but common to some maritime countries. As such, this study aims to explore South Africa’s unique approach to MET rather than the conventional approach of having higher education institutions dedicated specifically to maritime education and maritime training. This has created the need to analyse how the current MET system delivers training in compliance with the minimum standards of the convention. This paper therefore analyses how the STCW Convention and Code is embedded in the MET system in South Africa, and identifies the existing challenges in meeting the requirements of the convention, as well as identifying opportunities for improvement. The identification of challenges and opportunities is investigated by means of desktop research, reviewing existing literature, a document analyses on the academic and technical (vocational) framework, and a review of existing practice and benchmarking this against international practice standards (STCW). This paper proposes a framework that could contribute to the improvement of the current MET system in line with the requirements of the STCW 1978 as amended.