Shipping jobs unaffected by global meltdown

Posted on 2009-06-26
MARGAO: With limited options for employment in the state, youngsters as well as middle-aged persons from the state, particularly from Salcete taluka have been exploring the possibilities of finding gainful employment onboard ships for the past several years.
And as per knowledgeable sources, the employment in shipping industry is going great guns, despite recession worldwide. It is roughly estimated that almost half of the population from Salcete villages who are abroad are working onboard the ships — either on tankers, cruise liners or even on rigs.
A visit to some of the reputed recruitment offices in Margao indicated that around 200 to 250 recruitments are done every month where youngsters between the ages of 18 to 35 years are placed mostly on cruise liners.
When the director of a reputed agency rubbished reports that anyone from Salcete working on ships has been sent back, adding that normally when people reach a certain age they retire and their sons take over.
This agency’s higher ups disclosed that they prefer candidates possessing hotel management certificates from reputed institutions and a minimum three years experience in a five star hotel. The candidate has to pass certain other courses such as STC W 95, Fire Fighting, Elementary First Aid, personal survival techniques, personal safety and social responsibility, he added.
Generally, young boys are preferred he said, adding that no company, either Indian or foreign, would send back any candidate unless he is medically unfit. Age, however is not a problem, he further opined with such foreign companies, adding that one can work as long as one is able to.
It was also disclosed by another reputed shipping agency authorities that passenger ship familiarisation course and a CDC (Continuous Discharge Certificate) are demanded nowadays by reputed
foreign companies.
This agency too said that they have not heard from any quarters that any Goan was sent back from the ships after crossing the age of 50 to 55 years. It was disclosed that suitable courses for requirements to work on-board the ships are available at NUSI.
It was also disclosed that it is quite difficult to get an Indian CDC and that those seeking employment on ships get this certificates from Panama CDC, Bahama CDC and the Liberian CDC.
If one is equipped with these qualifications, employment on board the ship is guaranteed, disclosed some reputed shipping recruiting agencies in Margao, adding that the fear of being send back after the age of 50 to 55 years is a myth, despite the global recession.
Attempts to find out if any person was sent back from the ships after reaching the age of 50 to 55 years proved futile in coastal villages of Salcete like Majorda, Betalbatim, Colva, Benaulim, Varca etc.