Pilot project digital certificates for seafarers

25 June 2024

Seafarers can now use digital certificates during this pilot. Last month, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, along with Kiwa, merchant shipping and fishing companies, and the maritime sector, started a pilot project to issue digital certificates of competency (CoC) and proficiency for tankers (CoP) to Dutch seafarers. The goal is to make certificate use easier and reduce regulatory pressure on the maritime sector.

Expected advantages

The involved parties expect several advantages over current paper certificates: lower administrative burdens, easier enforcement and inspection, and faster access to the correct documents for seafarers.

Digital certificates

The digital certificates are legally recognised and have the same value as traditional paper documents. They are encoded and secured with advanced digital signatures based on internationally recognised standards, ensuring their authenticity and integrity.

The digital certificate is issued through a smartphone app called the "Kiwa eWallet." Inspectors can download the same app and verify the seafarer's document by scanning a QR code.

(Initial) results

The initial results are positive. In August, a mid-term evaluation will consider the possibility of making more certificates available in the app during the pilot. The results of this evaluation will be communicated with the involved shipowners and seafarers, social partners, and other relevant parties. The pilot will run until October 31, 2024.