B14. Who is the shipowner under the MLC, 2006?

The MLC, 2006 defines a shipowner as “the owner of the ship or another organization or person, such as the manager, agent or bareboat charterer, who has assumed the responsibility for the operation of the ship from the owner and who, on assuming such responsibility, has agreed to take over the duties and responsibilities imposed on shipowners in accordance with the Convention …”. This definition applies even if any other organizations or persons fulfil certain of the duties or responsibilities on behalf of the shipowner. This comprehensive definition was adopted to reflect the idea that, irrespective of the particular commercial or other arrangements regarding a ship’s operations, there must be a single entity, “the shipowner”, that is responsible for seafarers’ living and working conditions. This idea is also reflected in the requirement that all seafarers’ employment agreements must be signed by the shipowner or a representative of the shipowner [see C2.1. and C2.1.e.].

Questions about the workers and the ships covered by the MLC, 2006