Bulgaria Gets New Brussels Warning over Seafarers

Politics » BULGARIA IN EU | November 29, 2007, Thursday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0

Bulgaria is set to receive a new warning from Brussels after failing to transpose the European Union regulations on seafarers mobility and crew skills into its national legislation.

The European Commission announced on Thursday it will send letters of formal notice to 11 member states, including Bulgaria, which have failed to transpose the directive on the recognition of seafarers' certificates into their national law by 20 October 2007.

The other member states concerned are Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Spain, Finland, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal and the United Kingdom.

Bulgarian experts commented that the delay in transposing the directive stems from fears that local shipowners may lose seafarers to rival companies.

Brussels acknowledged the growing hardship affecting seafarers in many member states since the 1980s and with the directive for the first time introduced the automatic recognition of national certificates, aiming to facilitate their mobility.

The directive provides for a regular audit of the national marine training and certification systems to ensure that the member states fully respect existing standards of training and certification.

It requires the member states to put additional measures in place to prevent and combat fraudulent practices surrounding obtaining and issuing certificates.
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