The severe reduction in the movement of Australian flagged ships in and out of Australian waters and the significant increase in wages growth have resulted in less on-board places for the training of seafarers, making it difficult to train workers.
There is a general shortage of workers in the industry due to a previous lack of commitment from the industry to train; an ageing workforce and a significant increase in the work available.8 Skilled local workers are also being sourced by other states and countries.
This applies particularly to more highly skilled occupations such as marine engineers, marine pilots and ships’ captains, where competition is at a premium for the highest quality workers.9 Strong demand for seafarers arising from an increase in offshore oil and gas projects has intensified the need for qualified personnel.
Most of the training occurs at the new entrant level, with upskilling of the existing workforce following current trends.
However, access to sea time is still a major barrier to the successful training of workers, and a greater focus on simulation will need to be investigated.