Maritime Professional Council launch event on HQS Wellington

03 Sep 2021 Institute News

Maritime Professional Council sets course to influence lawmakers...

Shipping is going through huge technological changes and the industry's professional bodies say their expertise needs to be utilised more fully when policy decisions are made in this vital sector.

For generations, Professional organisations have provided a key source of expertise helping to maintain the right standards across industrial sectors. In the maritime sector this is often not the case meaning regulators and employers are missing out on years of experience leading professionals can bring to the table.

To make this easier a number of national and global professional associations based in the UK have formed the Maritime Professional Council (MPC) of the UK to make sure policy makers are aware of the considered professional opinions of those with the qualifications, expertise and experience to provide informed advice on the many policy decisions that need to be made.

The MPC will bring together the collective voices of the United Kingdom-based professional organisations for the British Merchant Navy and associated Maritime Industry. It will promote professionalism within the industry and offer expert opinion on maritime matters to the maritime community, industry, government and the media.

The founding organisations of the MPC are the Honourable Company of Master Mariners, The Nautical Institute, International Institute of Marine Surveying, Institute of Seamanship, and United Kingdom Marine Pilots Association. They say they realise that the government- and government-aligned bodies charged with policy and direction of the Merchant Navy and associated sectors of the shipping industry need the best practical pool of experience to draw upon. The MPC's experts will be able to contribute to policy discussions from an international perspective as well as sharing their in-depth understanding of the UK's maritime industries.

While the individual maritime professional bodies are respected within the shipping industry, their knowledge and experience are rarely sought when decisions are made on key policy and legislative changes. The MPC believes that having a strong collective voice will be a game changer.

One area of great concern to the professional bodies is maintaining the quality of seafarer training and the MPC will provide guidance to regulators and employers on the professional training standards for our maritime professionals

More generally the MPC will be able to provide independent expert advice and guidance based on its combined professional knowledge and experience unhindered by any financial or commercial interests.

The MPC is intended to provide a common space for collaboration, and exchange of ideas between the major technical organisations closely allied with the Merchant Navy and associated sectors of the shipping industry. It is intended that the MPC will become a key source of knowledge and opinion reflective of the skills, experience, and professional status of the membership of the individual member organisations.

The formal launch of the MPC takes place on HQS Wellington at1230 hours on Merchant Navy Day, 3rd September 2021. For more information and a press pass for the launch please contact David Hughes (tel. 07481 909310, email



Notes for Editors


Honourable Company of Master Mariners

Incorporated by Royal Charter, we are a City of London Livery Company with membership open to British and Commonwealth Master Mariners from the Merchant and Royal Navies. The company has three main interests:

Maintaining and developing professional standards, education & training and charitable giving. Formed in 1926 our aims are:

To encourage and maintain a high and honourable standard of ability and professional conduct in the officers of the British Merchant Navy

To promote and maintain in all respects efficient and friendly co-operation between the Merchant Navy and the Royal Navy

To be available for advice and consultation on all questions concerning or affecting the Merchant Navy, or judicial, commercial, scientific, educational or technical matters.


International Institute of Marine Surveying

The IIMS has been formally educating and training marine surveyors for over 15 years and is recognised as a leader in the area of marine surveyor education and training. In October 2017, IIMS was recognised for the excellence of its education programme when it was given an international award.

The Institute is the only professional body of its kind to offer and award such qualifications in marine surveying and manages and maintains the top quality education programme on a distance learning basis.


Institute of Seamanship

The Institute accepts that the definition of seamanship is the practical skill required to manage a ship or boat effectively and that the Institute, using this definition, has the following aims and objectives:

To promote seamanship through education and training as a practical skill requiring knowledge, experience and common sense.

To encourage professional and amateur seamen to extend their seamanship skills and experience and adopt sound seamanship practices.

To advance knowledge and practice of seamanship including its history and both present and future possibilities.

To support research into seamanship, past, present and future.

In connection with the objectives, we support the Sea Cadets and other charitable bodies offering practical training to young people in seamanship, through courses afloat.


The Nautical Institute


The Nautical Institute is a non-governmental organisation (NGO) with consultative status at the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Our aim is to promote professionalism, best practice and safety throughout the maritime industry and to represent the interests of our members.


United Kingdom Maritime Pilots Association

The UKMPA represents approximately 500 highly skilled UK Maritime Pilots.

Their role is to safely navigate ships in and out of the United Kingdom’s waterways and ports.

This undertaking is critical to protecting the country’s infrastructure and environment from damage and pollution, whilst ensuring the safe and efficient movement of 95% (by volume) of the UK imports and exports.