Origin of the Bargaining Council

In 1996 companies in the Maritime Industry were invited by South African Maritime and Safety Association (SAMSA), Department of Labour (DoL) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to attend a conference with the view to amend chapter 4 of the Merchant Shipping Act that deals with conditions of engagement of officers and crew – this act was totally incompatible with the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and seafarers were not recognised as employees and had very few rights.

This meeting was aimed mainly at the merchant marines and not at fishers. It was then agreed that the ILO would convene a conference to deal with the specific needs of fishers.

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