Bahamas a top-performing flag state, says ICS report
The Bahamas has been confirmed as a top-performing flag state, achieving positive scores across all 19 categories of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS)’s 2020-21 Flag State Performance Table.
In ICS’s latest report, The Bahamas scored highly for the Port State Control records of ships that fly the Bahamian flag, its ratification of conventions, crew- and training-related reporting, age of fleet and attendance at IMO meetings.
While The Bahamas performed strongly in all areas, other flag states provided fewer reports on seafarer wellbeing between 2020 and 2021 – a trend described by ICS as a “casualty of the pandemic”.
Only 42.9% of the 2,004 reports requested by the International Labour Organization (ILO) from governments in 2021 were granted, significantly down from the 70.7% rate of reporting for the previous year.
“This year’s table highlights a drop in levels of reporting on the status of national ILO labour standards, including the 2006 Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), underscoring the severe administrative pressures of the pandemic and the ongoing ‘crew change crisis’ on seafarers, governments and the industry alike,” the ICS statement said.
“The Table’s criterion assessing flag states’ reporting on ILO labour standards, including the MLC, revealed a 6-percentage point decrease in Flag States successfully meeting their obligations.”
Shipowners and operators can use the ICS report to examine the credibility of a flag state and to put pressure on registries to make improvements related to safety at sea, protecting the marine environment and providing seafarers with decent working and living conditions.
Download the full report here.