The problem of abandonment
The problem of abandoned seafarers is a stark one. The International Labour Organization (“ILO”) keeps a database of crew who have been abandoned. This can be accessed at: (http://www.ilo.org/dyn/seafarers/seafarersbrowse.home). However the ILO list is far from definitive. Abandonment is not easily defined. A crew may be forsaken even though officially the ship has not been abandoned. Yet given the vital role of shipping in the global economy, any instance of a seafarer being abandoned far from home and without the means to get back home must be a source of concern.