Not even a month has passed since the war in Ukraine began and its effects are already notarized in a significant way globally. One of the latest examples has been with maritime transport, key to international trade.
The shipping industry lives with great concern the current situation because a much of their workforce It comes from the two countries in conflict, that is, Russia and Ukraine. This means that there is a real and pressing risk staff shortage that further affects trade in the world.
The numbers are significant: on the planet there are 1.9 million workers in this sector and the sum of Ukrainians and Russians stand at 275,000 (and 14% of the total). In fact, both nationalities together exceed even the Philippines, which is the largest provider of maritime workers in the worldas reported by the Financial Times.
This means that Ukrainians and Russians are essential for the proper functioning of the product supply chain and that its absence will have very detrimental effects on the legacy of. Yes scenario, so negative globally, it is already beginning to be fulfilled.
It should be remembered that the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskyhas appealed to the inhabitants of the country to take up arms and stand up to Russian aggression and that is why there are already maritime workers who are returning home. In this regard, the Ukrainians represents 5.4% of civil servants who lead the crews of ships that trade internationally.
In addition, the Union of Maritime Transport Workers of Ukraine estimates that approximately 60% of the 80,0000 Marines of Ukraine are currently on boats and that and 20% want to go back and fight. If he keeps his promise, there would be no way to replace them, dealing a very heavy blow to world trade.
Also problems with Russia
It is not only a possible lack of Ukrainian workers in the sector, it is also the russians are also having a lot of problems due to the West’s attempts to isolate Moscow.
The sanctions are already being noticed and companies are facing difficulties in paying these employees, because access from Russia to the Swift network, the main form of international payment, has been reduced considerably.
As well, the cessation of many flights with the country makes it very difficult for maritime employees to travel wherever they are needed. An added factor is that there are already port workers’ unionsas is the case in the UK, which refuse to download or upload any Russian product.
Therefore, the reduction of Ukrainian and Russian workers seems to be going to hit hard a sector that has a few years without raising his head. fuel firsta coronavirus law that due to various border restrictions, leaving thousands of workers on land or at sea. Then it was the buds on board and finally severe supply crisis.
The war in Ukraine had also left its mark with the fear of companies transporting sanctioned cargo from Russia and the restricted customs controls as a consequence of the conflict. Now, the staffing shortage acts like a perfect storm reflecting that things even they can keep getting worse. And it is that the consequences of the problem in maritime transport will affect us all.
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