Wage Deal Done

Shipping companies and the ITF union have agreed a pay hike for crews worth 4.95% by 2016, after shipowners represented by the International Shipping Federation (ISF) met with the union at the International Labour Organization (ILO) to thrash out a deal.

Able seamen will receive a minimum monthly rate of $592 from 1 January, 2015, up from $585 currently. This then rises to $614 in 2016.

ISF spokesperson Arthur Bowring said: “We believe the decision taken is an appropriate one that gives shipowners adequate notice to be prepared for the impact of agreed changes going forward to 2016.”

The real significance is likely to be the effect it has on collective wage-bargaining negotiations, currently coming to a head under the International Bargaining Forum (IBF), where the ITF has called for a 15% pay rise.