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Press Release

ICS network launches global campaign to drive seafarer recruitment

26 June 2023
Pictured: Nirmalesh Chandra Nirmal, 2nd Officer, Fleet Management Ltd, Hong Kong, SAR, who features in the film

26 June 2023, London: The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) launches today a video titled ‘An Adventurous Spirit’, signifying the start of a global campaign to address the seafarer shortage.

‘An Adventurous Spirit’ is the result of collaboration between ICS and its network of members to produce a resource that the whole shipping industry can use in its recruitment efforts. The 10-minute video was produced using first-party testimonials gathered from current seafarers who shared insight into what their roles entail, speaking openly about the benefits and challenges of working at sea.

An estimated 90,000 STCW (International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers) certified officers are needed by 2026 to operate the world merchant fleet. ‘An Adventurous Spirit’ has been created in response to this challenge to urgently recruit more people to the industry and keep global trade moving.

Nirmalesh Chandra Nirmal, 2nd Officer, Fleet Management Ltd, Hong Kong, SAR, who features in the film, said:

“It was an honour to be involved with the making of ‘An Adventurous Spirit’. As a seafarer myself I know what a fantastic career this can be, and I am passionate about helping other people see this too. Seafaring is a challenging career, but the rewards are great. You will have opportunities for growth that can see you climb the career ladder, progressing to more senior roles at sea or transitioning to roles on land and making friends and memories that will last you a lifetime.”

Alongside the full-length 10-minute 45 seconds video is a 2-minute version created for use on social media. Multiple formats have been created so that the video is a flexible resource and can be used by industry across different platforms, tailoring it to their own recruitment efforts.


Kathryn Neilson, Director, Merchant Navy Training Board, which is charged with promoting seafaring as a career in the UK, said:

“Highlighting the numerous exciting opportunities open to all those considering a new career path is key if we are to attract more people into the Maritime industry.  This video will be a hugely valuable resource in the promotion of seafaring careers and will showcase the excellent and unique benefits a career at sea provides, from experiencing life on board with international crew to travelling the world.”

The release of the video coincides with the Shaping the Future of Shipping – Seafarer 2050 summit taking place in Manila today. This significant summit, that was attended by the President of the Philippines, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, Director-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Gilbert H. Houngbo, and industry leaders,  was dedicated to examining the elements required for a successful transformation of seafarers’ roles to meet the needs of shipping in the future. Topics discussed included education and training, building capacity and resilience, recruitment and retention of seafarers, and ensuring that any transition is safe, equitable and human-centric.

Natalie Shaw, Director of Employment Affairs, International Chamber of Shipping, said:

“The shipping industry, like many other industries, is facing a recruitment crisis. We wanted to set shipping apart from these other industries by showing what an attractive career seafaring is. What makes this video unique is that we are hearing from seafarers themselves, talking openly about their jobs, the challenges, and the opportunities.

“This video is a resource for the whole of the industry, and I encourage you to use it in your recruitment efforts when  you are promoting a career at sea”.

Link to videos

Please click here to download the 10 minute 45 second video from Vimeo.

Please click here to download the 2 minute video from Vimeo.

About ICS 

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) is the principal international trade association for merchant shipowners and operators, representing all sectors and trades and over 80% of the world merchant fleet –