Convention on better working conditions in the fishing sector

  • Published: 20/11/2017

The Convention concerning work in the fishing sector (ILO 188) was implemented in Norway on 16 November. The Convention applies to all fishing vessels irrespective of size, and compliance will be checked during supervision.

Illustrating photo from commercial fishing vessel
PHOTO: Halvard L. Aasjord, fotokonkurransen for sjøfolk

The objective of this Convention is to ensure that fishers have decent conditions of work on fishing vessels with regard to minimum requirements for work on board, conditions of service, accommodation and food, occupational safety and health protection, medical care and social security.

Most of the provisions of the Convention are already laid down in Norwegian legislation, but some amendments have now been included in Norwegian regulations. These provisions have been circulated for review in the industry.

Simultaneously with the introduction of ILO 188 in Norwegian legislation, the validity of the Trading Certificate of Compliance for fishing vessel is extended from 4 to 5 years.

The most important amendments to the legislation include:

  • requirement for certificate for working and living conditions for fishing vessels of:
    - 15 metres in overall length and upwards certified for Deepsea fishing I or greater trade area;
    - 24 metres in length (L) and upwards certified for Bank fishing I or greater trade area;
  • requirement for valid medical certificate;
  • requirement for crew list for all fishing vessels;
  • requirement for safe manning document on board fishing vessels of 24 metres in length and upwards from 1 July 2018;
  • new requirements related to work by and placement of young people on Norwegian fishing vessels;
  • employment agreements and documentation of hours of work and rest must be available on board.

Furthermore, the normal working hours for persons working on board fishing vessels shall not exceed 48 hours per week, calculated as an average over a period not exceeding 12 months.

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