Cyprus and Montenegro sign MoU for mutual recognition of maritime certificates

Cyprus and Montenegro sign MoU for mutual recognition of maritime certificates

The Republic of Cyprus and Montenegro this week signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to mutually recognise the certificates of competency for officers on merchant ships, marking a significant step in their maritime cooperation.

The agreement was signed in Limassol during an informal bilateral meeting by Cyprus’ Deputy Minister of Shipping Marina Hadjimanolis, and Montenegro’s Minister of Transport and Maritime Affairs Filip Radulovic.

According to a relevant announcement, the MoU is part of Cyprus’ broader strategy to enhance its bilateral external relations and foster mutually beneficial partnerships in the maritime sector.

It specifically addresses the mutual recognition of competency certificates for ship officers issued by the respective authorities of the two countries.

This agreement is particularly timely, as it addresses the acute shortage of qualified seafarers, noted by the Ministry of Shipping.

It allows ships under the Cypriot flag to be staffed with Montenegrin masters and officers and vice versa.

What is more, this cross-recognition is expected to broaden the employment opportunities for seafarers within both jurisdictions.

“The MoU confirms the mutual will of both the Deputy Ministry of Shipping and the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs of Montenegro, as well as the two governments to strengthen cooperation between them further while defining the framework of this cooperation both at a bilateral level, as well as in the context of their joint participation in international organisations such as the International Maritime Organisation (IMO),” stated the announcement.

Expressing her satisfaction with the new agreement, Hadjimanolis emphasised the potential for new employment opportunities for officers on Montenegrin-flagged ships.

“This cooperation will be governed by systematic communication between the parties in areas falling under the competence of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, while a channel of communication is being opened to consider new partnerships with Montenegro,” the minister said.

On his part, Filip Radulovic emphasised the importance of the MoU for the Montenegrin maritime industry.

He explained that the agreement would allow seafarers to start working on the more than a thousand Cypriot-flagged ships, which are renowned for their “highest standards of training, safety, and quality of work.”

“This initiative is vital for the future of Montenegro’s maritime sector”, he concluded.

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