Benin and Nigeria Deemed High Risk Areas

Seafarers are to get double pay for serving in the territorial waters of Benin and Nigeria, after they were designated a high risk area by employers and unions at the International Bargaining Forum.

The standing also gives crews the right to sign off, and commits owners to enhanced security measures.
The move, which comes into force on April 1, follows a sharp increase in the number of attacks on vessels in West Africa, including some incidents in which seafarers have been held for ransom, in apparent emulation of Somali pirate tactics.

The high risk area provisions apply to all ships operated under an IBF agreement, and the International Transport Workers’ Federation may extend them to ships covered by non-IBF ITF agreements. Some flag states may adopt them as a matter of good practice.

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