News & Events-Department for Transport publishes Frazer-Nash maritime training report

The Department for Transport and Maritime and Coastguard Agency have published Frazer-Nash's report on the Support for Maritime Training (SMarT) Scheme.

Since 1998 the UK Government has supported the training of officers, officer cadets and ratings through the Support for Maritime Training (SMarT) scheme. The aim of this scheme is to facilitate an adequate supply of UK maritime expertise to meet the nation's economic and strategic requirements.

Supported by Oxford Economics, the report was commissioned as part of a wider strategy to drive growth in the maritime sector, encouraging greater investment and making the UK flag more attractive to ship owners. Training is a key focus with pledges to identify skills gaps, support maritime education and promote the wide range of careers in the sector.

Frazer-Nash's assessment of the SMarT scheme features recommendations on areas including funding and data collection - and the consequences of retaining or increasing the level of subsidy. Also discussed is the development of an industry database to collect data from colleges and sponsors to track trainees and seafarers through their careers, to provide robust data on which government and industry can base strategic and policy decisions.

You can read the Frazer-Nash report here.

The UK Chamber of Shipping; the maritime professional's trade union, Nautilus International; and the seafarers' union, RMT, welcomed the recommendations.

Tim Springett, the UK Chamber of Shipping's Policy Director, Employment and Legal, said: "The UK Chamber welcomes the recommendation that the government give a long-term commitment to SMarT funding. This will assist employers greatly in devising their crew training and employment strategies and give greater certainty to maritime education and training institutions when making decisions on infrastructure investments."

Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary, said: "Whilst the SMarT scheme mainly benefits officer cadet trainees, RMT is pleased that the consultants' report to the Shipping Minister recommends increasing the SMarT fund in order to develop and increase the number of officers and ratings in the UK merchant navy."

Nautilus General Secretary, Mark Dickinson, said: "This is a very welcome study that gives detailed and rigorous support to the arguments we have been making for many years now."