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Caribbean Maritime Institute Ties Up Deal With German Shipping Firm

by Amanda Banks,, London

22 June 2006

German shipping company Harren and Partner has signed an agreement with the Caribbean Maritime Institute that the firm hopes will help it to bridge a growing recruitment shortage and skills gap in the global maritime industry.

The agreement, signed recently at the CMI's headquarters in Jamaica, will see cooperation in the field of training and the recruitment of officers and exchange of information and personnel.

For Harren and Partner, it is hoped that this will ensure a steady stream of crew for the company and its crewing agencies.

The agreement will also help the CMI to place its own graduates.

"It is very difficult for institutions that train maritime personnel to exist without an alliance with a sound shipping entity," Commander Michael Rodriguez, executive director of CMI, was quoted as observing by the Jamaica Gleaner.

"Harren and Partner represents such an entity and with the scope of their operations and the degree to which they dovetail into world shipping, this agreement could see the solving of the issues of placement of our graduates for some time," he added.

The Caribbean Maritime Institute is a Tertiary Institution specializing in Maritime education and training for professional seafarers and Allied Industry personnel. It was established as a joint project between the Jamaican and Norwegian Governments in September 1980 and later became a statutory body under the laws of Jamaica on January 4, 1993.

Noting a global shortage of officers, Heiko Felderhoff, managing director of Harren & Partner, explained that the agreement with the CMI was "only natural" given company's ten-year history of operating container feeder services in the Caribbean centred on its Kingston hub.

"Part of our mandate as a company is to establish partnerships that are both beneficial to our operation and give us a chance to develop shipping generally," he stated, according to the Gleaner.

Harren and Partner, based in Bremen, was established in 1989 and now operates over 40 ships of varying types including tankers container vessels and heavy lifting ships. The company is also planning to add to its fleet over the next four years with six new vessels.

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