Recruitment of seafarers

Recruitment and placement according to MLC Convention

The ILO MLC 2006 Convention, which entered into force on 20 August 2013, lays down minimum standards for the protection of working and living conditions on board.
This voluntary certification scheme aims to integrate the requirements for management as a recruitment and placement process with the aspects introduced by the 2006 Maritime Labour Convention.

Regulatory Focus

Rule 1.4 of the ILO MLC Convention 2006 sets the minimum requirements that must be met by agencies offering recruitment and placement services - an operation exposed to innumerable risks to the workers’ rights, which therefore deserves special attention and protection.

Certification Procedure

Audits are carried out by professionals qualified in MLC 2006 in consultation with experts on labour law, international standards and human resource management.


Some of RINA’s most extensive experience lies with the maritime industry and it is an international leader in social accountability and worker protection. RINA is also recognised by many Flag Administrations for MLC 2006 inspections on board ships.


Are there any prerequisites to be met for the purpose of this certification?

The applicant agency must have established, maintained and fully operate a Quality Management System (QMS), certified or not certified by an accredited third party body.

Is the shipowner responsible under Rule 1.4?
If the shipowner uses a private recruitment agency, they must ensure that the activity is exercised under a regulated licensing or certification system or another regulatory system.

What happens if seafarers are recruited in a State that has not ratified the MLC 2006?
The shipowner who outsources the recruitment process to an agency located in a State which has not ratified the Convention must ensure that it operates in accordance with Rule 1.4 of the MLC 2006 and demonstrate, during the checks at the ports of the signatory States, that the recruitment process has taken place in full compliance with the requirements of the Convention.



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