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Thread: ILO 108 and the MMC

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    Orniphobe is offline gCaptain Crew
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    Default ILO 108 and the MMC

    My U.S. MMC says "This document is a seafarers' identity document for the purpose of the Seafarers' Identity Documents Convention (Revised), 2003, of the International Labor Organization" even though the ILO web site says the U.S. is not signatory to ILO 108. Why aren't we? And how do we get away with saying that in the MMC? It would have saved me hours of emails today if it just said this book is not ILO 108 compliant.

    My Liberian book says "This book is issued in conformity wih the provisions of ILO Convention No. 108, The Seafarers' Identity Documents Convention, 1958."

    Apparently this is a big deal in some countries to go ashore without a visa (id est, Brazil).
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    Default Re: ILO 108 and the MMC

    Found a good article, a little dated, but to your point, and to feed my curiosity.......

    FRIDAY, JANUARY 7, 2011

    Why has ILO 185 Stalled?
    Why has ILO 185 Stalled?

    The International Labor Convention (ILO) C108 – Seafarers Identity Document adopted on 13 April 1958 allowed the countries that ratified it to issue Identity documents to seafarers of any nationality.

    Ratifying countries would not require visas for seafarers holding such an identity document. Thus seafarers were allowed shore leave and to join and leave their vessels without the need of visa formalities. Following ratification C108 came into force on 19 February 1961. The Convention was ratified by 59 countries, the first being Tunisia on 26 October 1959 with 5 nations denouncing it.

    Notably, one of the non-signatories was the United States of America (USA) and this along with other requirements on the part of the USA has meant that many owners insist that seafarers joining their vessels must hold dual USA C1/D visas. This is an onerous burden on shipping and on seafarers particularly so for those entering the industry as a first time seafarer. Among other non-signatories are China and the Philippines.

    On 19 June 2003, C185 was adopted by the by ILO member governments. This convention had an entry into force date of 19 February 2005 with the first signatory being France followed by Hungary on 17 April and 19 August of 2004 respectively. Countries ratifying C185 are permitted to issue Seafarers Identity Documents (SID) to their own nationals only. However, SIDs they can issue SIDs to non-nationals who have been granted the status of permanent residence in the country.

    With the coming into being of C185, C108 was closed for ratification with the last two countries to do so being India and Turkey on 17 January and 7 February of 2005. Under the C185 ratification terms, countries ratifying it, automatically denounce C108 in other words they must no longer recognize the provision of C108. At the time of writing, only a mere 18 countries have ratified C185 with one making a declaration of applicability and no denouncers. Like C108 before it, C185 allows seafarers who have been issued an SID to enjoy shore leave as well as joining, transferring to from or leaving their vessels without the need of a visa, but subject to certain conditions.

    Countries that ratified C108 still recognize SIDs issued under it and some may even recognize SID’s issued under C185, for example the United Kingdom as a visit to www.ukvisas.gov.uk/en/ecg/seafarers will adequately demonstrate.

    However, there are also flies in the ointment with Brazil being hailed as one of them. Beware the seafarer who goes on shore leave with their C108 SID as they are fined unless they hold a visa in their passport for doing so.

    The writer understands that recently, a vessel with twelve Filipinos holding on board holding Seafarers Books by the Philippine government was fined USD 30,000 total or USD 2,500 each in Recife Brazil. Apparently, this was because they were not holding seafarer’s books issued by a state that has ratified the ILO 185 or 108. This is a very recent development and is being constested

    Considering that, most people can very easily travel to a place of work even if it means crossing international borders without the need of visas. Why is it that this civility is not accorded to those on whom the world is almost totally reliant upon for the movement of raw material and manufactured goods?

    Those in power, in the guise of security are making it so difficult for honest decent and professional people to go about their work. If seafarers refused to deliver such goods as, coal, oil or gas to fuel the power stations that in turn produce the energy to fuel economies, warm and cool the homes of their nation, how would they react? Certainly it would warrant their urgent attention otherwise they would be out of a job.

    2010, THE YEAR OF THE SEAFARER reached its end and yet the few who are depended upon by so many in the global society are still not afforded some very basic human rights. Ratification by all of those who agreed to its adoption of ILO 185 now some seven and a half years after its adoption would help to do this

    Jim Nicoll
    www.faceofshipping.com
    "Captain standard operating procedure for decision making is to do what feels right to you at the time, and then to give logical sounding justifications for what you were already going to do anyway" -
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    While I don't think Brazil should have the right to fine the ship (their only right is to not allow the seamen off the vessel) I don't see why any government that issues maritime documents would not be a signatory to one of those two ILO conventions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orniphobe
    My U.S. MMC says "This document is a seafarers' identity document for the purpose of the Seafarers' Identity Documents Convention (Revised), 2003, of the International Labor Organization" even though the ILO web site says the U.S. is not signatory to ILO 108. Why aren't we? And how do we get away with saying that in the MMC? It would have saved me hours of emails today if it just said this book is not ILO 108 compliant.
    For anyone not wanting to read the article posted, the short answer to this is because the US is a signatory to ILO 185, not ILO 108...
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    anchorman is offline Super Moderator
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    Default Re: ILO 108 and the MMC

    Quote Originally Posted by Capt. Schmitt View Post
    For anyone not wanting to read the article posted, the short answer to this is because the US is a signatory to ILO 185, not ILO 108...
    The US is not signatory to ILO 185. There are very few conventions that the US has ratified and nothing since 2001 by looking at the database. ILO 185 is ILO 108 revised.
    "Captain standard operating procedure for decision making is to do what feels right to you at the time, and then to give logical sounding justifications for what you were already going to do anyway" -
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    Default Re: ILO 108 and the MMC

    I suppose, post 9/11, I can understand why the U.S. doesn't want foreign seamen wondering the countryside without going through the visa process. The bad guys could exploit that easy enough. But it does put a burden on American seamen overseas if our MMC is not recognized.

    Has anyone heard of a 72 hour grace period to get out of Brazil if you do not have a visa or ILO 108 book?
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    Quote Originally Posted by anchorman

    The US is not signatory to ILO 185. There are very few conventions that the US has ratified and nothing since 2001 by looking at the database. ILO 185 is ILO 108 revised.
    Hmmm, when I read it the first time it seemed like the article was saying the us was a signatory. After rereading I guess I was wrong.
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    Default Problems in S. America

    Quote Originally Posted by Orniphobe View Post

    Has anyone heard of a 72 hour grace period to get out of Brazil if you do not have a visa or ILO 108 book?
    I wonder what's up with this? I was just in Brazil last December, crew went ashore no problem. In fact I got off in
    Santos and flew to the States from Sao Paulo.

    We did get hassled a little by port authorities in Brazil when the found a single package of food past the expiration date. They also required us to remove vegetables from the cardboard boxes they came in and store them in plastic crates which we had to purchase locally. Compliance with ballast regulations is also a big deal. We had to but a chain and lock on the overboard discharge valve.

    We had no problems in Argentina but I was warned that it is far worse than Brazil. Evidently fines of $4,000 to $40,000 have been given for incorrect stores list in Zarate by the so called customs "black gang".



    K.C.
    Last edited by Kennebec Captain; October 20th, 2011 at 04:50 AM. Reason: sp
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    Default Re: Problems in S. America

    Quote Originally Posted by Kennebec Captain View Post
    I wonder what's up with this? I was just in Brazil last December, crew went ashore no problem. In fact I got off in
    Santos and flew to the States from Sao Paulo.
    That's good to hear. Right now the visa agent is telling us on arrival anyone without a visa has 72 hours to get out. If you have the ILO 108 compliant book, you don't get fined but you still have to leave.
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