China Records Strongest Seafarer Wage Growth

21 June 2024 – China has seen the strongest increase in seafarer wages across the main seafaring countries in international shipping in recent years, according to the latest Manning Annual Review and Forecast report published by global shipping consultancy Drewry.

“China is a large and growing supply source of seafarers. It maintains its position as the second-largest supplier of seafarers to international merchant shipping, accounting for around 11% of the total sea-based workforce,” Drewry said in a statement.

The supply of officers is growing and although domestic-flagged vessels are the biggest employers, officers are increasingly found in international employment on all vessel types.

“For candidates considering a career at sea in ratings ranks, the employment market within mainland China remains strong. Combined with the growth of the Chinese economy, there is a robust demand for skilled labour which competes directly with the option of work at sea,” Drewry noted.

“This has led to higher-than-usual pay increases for ratings where employers have to compete not just with other options at sea, but also the onshore demand.”

The strong wage growth rate is visible in the dry sector where the Chinese growth rate has exceeded 5%.

However, wage increases can be significantly different between sectors and seafarer ranks, and between nationalities. Source: Freight News