On the afternoon of December 29, 2020, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended the 10th Joint Meeting of the China-Italy Government Committee with Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio via video link. At the closing ceremony, Cao Desheng, Director General, China Maritime Safety Administration （MSA）and Di Matteo, Director General, Bureau of Port, Maritime, Inland Waterways Infrastructure and Transport, Italy’s Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, signed a Memorandum of Understanding （MoU）on Mutual Recognition of Seafarers’Certificates of Competence. State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio witnessed the signing of the agreement.
Under the framework of the MoU, the two sides will recognize seafarers’ certificates of competence and training issued by the other’s maritime administration within the scope of the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers （STCW Convention）of the International Maritime Organization（IMO）. If a crew member is serving on a ship of the nationality of the other party, he only needs to hold a certificate of competency issued by the maritime authority of his country, and the other party’s maritime authority can endorse the certificate.
The year of 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Italy. China and Italy are Category （a）Council Members of IMO, and STCW Convention States. The results of this new cooperation in the training and certificates of seafarers will not only benefit Chinese seafarers’ employment in Italian ships, but will also help Italian seafarers serve the cruise industry in our country to further strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation in the transport field between the two countries and firmly support Italy-China comprehensive strategic partnership.
At present, the number of contracting parties recognizing seafarers’certificates of competence issued by China Administration or contracting parties in agreement with China on mutual recognition of seafarers’ certificates of competence has increased to 27.