Directive 2017/2397 – Recognition of professional qualifications in inland navigation

Directive (EU) 2017/2397 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2017 on the recognition of professional qualifications in inland navigation and repealing Council Directives 91/672/EEC and 96/50/EC, has been published on December 27, 2017, entered into force on January 16, 2018 and should have been implemented in national regulation on January 17, 2022 at the latest.

Back in December 2021, we have informed you – click HERE! – that we are working on informative Brochures that will provide you with all the information needed. The brochures are currently available in English, German and Dutch language while French version is in the making.

Professional qualifications in inland navigation – INFO BROCHURE with all the essential information

The brochure “Professional qualifications in inland navigation – the new European law”, published by the IWT Platform provides information on the essential regulations of Directive (EU) 2017/2397 on the recognition of professional qualifications in inland navigation, as well as on the delegated acts and CESNI standards issued in this context. The brochure is addressed to all those who work in inland navigation as well as to those who are interested in training or in a lateral entry into inland navigation.

The new European law creates uniform requirements for obtaining and recognising professional qualifications as well as for service record books and logbooks. All Union certificates of qualification, service record books and logbooks will be valid on all waterways of the Union. Common documents will make life easier for both the inspecting authorities and the inland navigation operators.

In addition, the harmonised standards will help to make training and examinations for obtaining certificates of competency more comparable. Good training standards throughout Europe ensure a high level of safety and facilitate the mobility of workers in an international sector such as inland navigation.

This is of great importance with regard to the shortage of qualified personnel. Various ways of qualification open the door to a job in inland navigation. The possibilities of obtaining a Union certificate – either via a training programme, practical qualification through navigation time or via shortened ways as a lateral entrant from the maritime sector or other professions – are outlined in detail in the brochure. In addition, information can be found for example on the scope of application, specific authorisations, medical fitness or the validity of existing certificates and authorisations.

Unfortunately, the Directive will not be implemented in many Member States in time by 18 January 2022, which creates serious problems for the industry and training institutions. EBU and ESO are appealing to the Member States and the Commission to find adequate transitional solutions until the implementation is done in all Member States!

Info Brochures are available in the following languages:
  1. English versionview HERE!
  2. German versionview HERE!
  3. Dutch versionview HERE! 
    Kind translation of Ms Pauline de Zinger.
  4. French versionview HERE!
    Kind translation of Ms Laurence Wagner.

In case of any further questions, please contact the IWT Platform’s Social and Education Committee.

Andrea Beckschäfer