Dutch skilled maritime labour force

Work and Training

The Netherlands offers a highly skilled, flexible and multilingual maritime labour force, with expertise in all areas, both on shore and on board. Moreover, the Netherlands is highly flexible in its approach to employment contracts.  An example of this is the high percentage of recruitment through a temporary recruitment agency, which offers skilled staff in almost all the professional categories, while other agencies concentrate on specific sectors or posts.

High level of seafarer education and training

Dutch education and training has always been widely admired for its thorough approach and wide variety of subjects that are available to students. Foreign language skills are given high priority in all the courses. As a result, Dutch students’ foreign language skills are among the best in Europe, in particular knowledge of the English language. The curriculums of almost all vocational training courses include secondments which enable students to experience the workplace at first hand. Moreover, the content of these courses has been determined in close consultation with industry, trade and business communities, so that the strongest possible links can be forged between training and professional practice. The various maritime educational options in the Netherlands form an integral part of the country’s national education system and are therefore the responsibility of both the Minister of Education, Culture and Science and the Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management. The latter’s responsibility is to ensure that students who complete their education are truly competent and safe seafarers whose skills can be endorsed.