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the "rules of the road" of the European Labour Market

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  • the "rules of the road" of the European Labour Market

    I'm a Brazilian Maritime College graduate waiting to do my time as a deck cadet, and I have the intention to move to Europe as soon as I'm done with it and become a Third Mate. The thing that bothers me the most is that I know nothing abou how the European job market works and it seems very diferent from my country, I'm also strugling to find good information about it. My main question is what are the different "modalities" in wich a seaferer can work, for instance: in my research i found a lot ot Job Vacancies adds that were for contracts that olnly cover the time you are on board sailing and were very short, but here a lot of companies hire you for very long periods in wich the time you stay inland is the same you stay aborad(28x28 56x56) and the company will pay for any course and other mandatory qualification to climb the ranks. I've also heard a lot about Crewing Agencies wich is uncommon here, as most companies hire the crew for their ships themselves. I have a portugese citzenship and I intend to work on tankers or LNGs (I will do my cadetship on these kind of vessels). I'm already looking on all the courses that I had at the Brazilian maritime college and their international equivalents, but as I said before Im strugling with finding info about the "rules of the road" so any info or source in that area will be more than welcome = )

  • #2
    This is a little late but hopefully still of some help!

    The first hurdle would be the validity of your CoC. MGN 221 talks about the requirements for converting a foreign CoC to a UK CeC. Unfortunately Brazil isn't on the list of accepted CoCs, you would have to contact the MCA directly. I'm afraid I have no idea how the Portuguese work, but I imagine they have a similar list. It would seem likely they have some sort of arrangement with their Brazilian counterparts. If you manage to get a European CoC then it will be accepted on any EU member state vessel.

    There is a lot of agency type work in Europe, short term contracts either for one voyage, or a rotation for a fixed period of time. It is very common to work for and be paid 'through' an agency. This really just makes it easier for the Shipowner to get rid of people when they are no longer needed. There are permanent jobs too though where you are paid an annual salary and expected to be at sea for 6 months (or whatever). Agency work usually is paid by the day when you are onboard only. On balance, the real salary at the end of the year is much the same agency vs permanent. Some people (like me) prefer the agency style of work. It allows you to get more experience on different types of vessel once they like you and know you are good.

    Basically, you just need to find out if Portugal - or any EU member state - will accept a Brazilian CoC as equivalent. If they do you are in luck. Your passport will let you live and work anywhere in the EU.

    Teekay LNG recruit Spanish officers fairly regularly, they might be worth an ask.

    A word of caution though. Brazil has some heavy restrictions on who can work on their vessels around Brazil - hence you see so many Brazilians! If you get a job on a coastal tanker in the UK for example, you should not be surprised if most of the crew are from Eastern Europe - lots of manning agencies there and lower rates of pay. Most tanker contracts I have seen recently tend to be around 3/4 months onboard and slightly less time at home. I really think you have it better in Brazil! But good luck to you.

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    • #3
      thanks for all the info!

      the only issue for me about the brazilian labour market is that it's mainly focused on the Offshore Industry, wich is not someting I really want to work on..

      Also, I'm very found of sailing and in Europe the sport is taken to another level, and there is a lot more variety of boats, marinas, etc.

      thanks again for helping, hoping you the best : )

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