AMSA Memorandum on Leave Entitlement as per MLC 2006

November 2014

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The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has issued advice to Recognised Organisations advising that the maximum period that a seafarer can serve on board a ship before taking one month of paid annual leave is 11 months.

Memorandum on the Application of Regulation 2.4 - Entitlement to Leave, Maritime Labour Convention

Recently, during the course of port State control inspections, the PSCO has cited deficiencies whereby the terms of a seafarer's employment agreement have been extended or a new SEA issued that are in non-compliance with MLC Regulation 2.4 - Entitlement to Leave. These deficiencies have been cited for the following reasons:

The subject matter is actually a combination of two MLC items.

Standard A2.5.2(b) states that the maximum duration of service on board before a seafarer is entitled to repatriation must be less than 12 months. This doesn't necessarily mean they must be repatriated, but rather they are entitled to repatriation.

However, Regulation 2.4 clearly states the seafarer must be given paid annual leave and Standard A2.4 clearly states that annual leave shall be calculated at 2.5 calendar days per month of employment, which equates to 30 days over a calendar year. Standard A2.4.3 also states any agreement to forgo the minimum annual leave with pay prescribed in that standard, except in cases provided for by the competent authority, shall be prohibited.

AMSA will be issuing a Marine Notice on this subject in due course.