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Certification and Examination
Requirements for Crew on Board Hong Kong Registered Ships

  • There are no nationality or residential requirements for the officers or crew members serving on Hong Kong registered ships.

  • All deck officers and marine engineer officers serving on Hong Kong registered ships must hold either valid Certificates of Competency or Licences issued by the Marine Department.

  • Certificates of Competency are obtained through examinations conducted by the Seafarers' Certification Section, Marine Department whereas Licences are issued in recognition of the seafarers' certificates awarded by other Administrations on the white list.

  • Hong Kong has made Undertaking with 61 countries (as at 23 October 2017) in accordance with STCW Convention for recognition of their certificates. Holders of certificates issued by these countries can be issued with equivalent Hong Kong Licences and/or GMDSS Certificates of Equivalent Competency. Please refer to the guidelines given in web page .

  • Radio Officers or radio operating personnel are required to hold either

    • (a) Hong Kong GMDSS radio certificates with endorsement issued by the Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA) ; or

    • (b) Hong Kong GMDSS Certificate of Equivalent Competency with endorsement and a foreign GMDSS radio certificate ; or

    • (c) GMDSS radio personnel endorsement issued by the Marine Department on the officers' licences and a foreign GMDSS radio certificate.
  Certificate of Competency
  • Except junior grades, all watchkeeping ratings must hold STCW Convention watch-rating certificates issued by Hong Kong or other Administrations which are Parties to the Convention.

  • Further enquiries on certification and examination can be addressed to the Senior Surveyor/Seafarers' Certification Section on Tel: (852) 2852 4368 or Fax: (852) 2541 6754 or at E-mail address:
Manning Levels
  • All Hong Kong registered ships must carry a Minimum Safe Manning Certificate.

  • Minimum Safe Manning Certificate is issued on application and the manning level is assessed individually for each ship.

  • Further enquiries and detail application procedures for Minimum Safe Manning Certificate can be addressed to the Senior Surveyor/Cargo Ship Safety Section on Tel: (852) 2852 4510 or Fax: (852) 2545 0556 or at E-mail

Functions and Services Provided by the Seafarers' Certification Section
  • Conduct examinations for Certificates of Competency as deck or marine engineer officers at various levels for sea-going and river trade ships.

  • Assess foreign certificates and process applications for the issue of licences.

  • Approve and monitor various training courses provided by training institutes.

  • Conduct examinations and monitor training for the issue of Type Rating Certificates for high speed craft.

  • Make, revise, amend and implement regulations and rules relating to certification.

  • Issue dangerous cargo endorsement and revalidation to Certificates of Competency.

  • Participate in the development and amendment of IMO international conventions and to take action to bring about their implementation in local legislation.