KARACHI - There is a shortage of 10,000 seafarers all over the world which will increase up to 30,000 by 2011, while Pakistan is only producing 100 seafarers a year and unable to attract entrants to the shipping industry, the Nation learnt. It is learnt that today Pakistan has some 20,000 mariners, who are sailing on foreign vessels remitting about $70 million as Pakistan National Shipping Corporation is left with 11 ships in public sector, out of which 10 are 28 years old. Pakistan Marine Academy (PMA) produces only 100 cadets a year and Maritime Training Institute is also not contributing enough. The current officer shortfall of 10,000 is rising to 27,000 by 2015, while Drewry estimates officer shortfall at 34,000 against 498,000 total, rising to 83,900 by 2012 assuming current supply levels and fleet growth at 17 per cent. While commenting on the issue, Member Board of Governor World Maritime University, Malmao, Sweden, Capt Anwar Shah said that International Maritime Organisation has launched go to sea programme, but we are in deep slumber. We could earn $0.5 billion by training our human resource as India is earning $1 billion and Philippine is pocketing a revenue of $3 billion from seafarers remittance, he added. He said that the PNSC could turn one of its old ships to Maritime Floating Institute to initially train cadet officers preferably in nautical faculty and subsequently engineering cadets, and the vessel may be moored at Karachi, Port Qasim, or at Gizri Creek being exempted from port dues. Benazir Youth Fund is another source to exploit in this regard, and we have to make efforts to line up with foreign shipping lines. However, the vessel at moorings may last another 10/15 years and will be churning out trained officers to meet world demands, he urged. It is pertinent to mention that recruitment rather than retention seems to be the problem despite the fact that shipping carries over 90 percent of world trade and considered to be a clean, efficient and most economical mode of transport. The main effects on workforces in the maritime industry are long working hours and less holidays, less experienced workforce, fewer crew, increase in salaries and age profile, potential increase in fraudulent qualifications, impact on quality of service due to increased work, stress and fatigue. Capt. Shah recommended the maritime industry to work on improving image of shipping in general and promote seafaring as a career, enhance conditions of service, support training institutes, and explore possibilities to re-train professionals from related industries (fishing, naval, etc). The government should establish and maintain training facilities and other steps, in this regard could support campaigns for promoting shipping as a career, provide training incentives to industry, recognising of sea service instead of compulsory military service, and reducing effects of negative administrative actions (criminalization, shore leave etc.).