India has signed a MoU with the Republic of Korea on Mutual Recognition of Certificates of Competency of Seafarers. This paves the way for the two governments to mutually recognise the certificates of maritime education and training, competency, endorsements and medical fitness of seafarers issued by each other. The agreement was inked by Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Shipping and his Korean counterpart Kim Young-choon at a ceremony in Busan on Tuesday.
Mr Gadkari said that the signing of the agreement will benefit both countries. Korea is a large shipowning nation. As of now, Korean entities own more than 500 foreign-going ships, and need seafarers to work on their fleet. India has around 1,54,349 seafarers. The agreement will open up employment opportunities for Indian seafarers on Korean ships, it was pointed out.
Gadkari is on a four-day visit to the Republic of Korea since Monday, during which he visited Busan Port and attended the India-Korea Maritime Cooperation Forum. The visit is aimed at strengthening bilateral cooperation between the two countries in shipping, ports, inland waterways, highways, river interlinking and infrastructure sectors.