More than one fifth of "today's" sailors are not needed 2040

18 January 2019

The introduction of smart ships and new technology can reduce global demand for sailors, who work with current technology, by 22 percent by 2040. But that does not mean that the number of sailors will be less. On the contrary, more is needed, but with new kinds of skills.
This, according to a new report from World Maritime University.

The two-year study, which was funded by the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) has concluded that new technology will cut global demand for seafarers by around 22% between now and 2040.

But it predicts that continued growth in world seaborne trade will mean a sustained demand for skilled and experienced seafarers, but the task of seafarers will change to more digital ones, especially in operations monitoring and system management and in less operational work. As pointed out, the seafarer of the future will benefit by combining maritime skills with the digital ones.

When it comes to the port sector, the workforce in ports needs training and reskilling. Although port automation is developing rapidly, some automation processes in ports still face considerable technical impediments, according to the report.

Researchers concluded that the introduction of automation in global transport will be evolutionary, rather than revolutionary and that 'despite high levels of automation, qualified human resources with the right skill sets will still be needed in the foreseeable future'.

Read the full report here


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