Recognition of Australian certificates
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Working in New Zealand
To work on a New Zealand-flagged ship, you will need to have your Australian certificate recognised as an equivalent to a New Zealand certificate.
Due to differences between the Australian and New Zealand seafarer certification frameworks:
- it may not be possible to match the exact privileges of your Australian domestic certificate
- a New Zealand recognition cannot grant privileges that are greater than those of your original certificate
Corresponding New Zealand certificates, providing the closest match to your Australian certificate, can be found in the Australia-New Zealand seafarer certificate conversion tables.
Is your certificate eligible?
Starting work in New Zealand
You may begin working in the capacity of your corresponding New Zealand certificate while the Director considers your application, provided that:
- your application is correct and complete
During this period, you must adhere to any special conditions placed on your Australian certificate.
If your certificate is recognised, it will be acknowledged by way of an endorsement, a New Zealand certificate of competency or proficiency (as appropriate).
How to apply
These steps provide a basic overview of how to apply for recognition and is in accordance with the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Act 1997.
To complete an application, you need to provide all of the information and documents we require.
If you do not provide all of the required information we cannot process your application and we will return it and your other documents to you.
Australia-New Zealand seafarer certificate conversion
Australian certificates eligible for recognition
|State or Northern Territory certificate||Australian certificate||New Zealand certificate|
|General Purpose Hand||General Purpose Hand NC||Qualified Deck Crew|
|Coxswain||Coxswain Grade 1 NC||Skipper Restricted Limits endorsed to carry 12 or more passengers|
|Coxswain (restricted to smooth or sheltered waters)||Coxswain Grade 1 NC (restricted to sheltered waters)||Skipper Restricted Limits|
|Master Class 5
Skipper Grade 3
Master Class 5/ Skipper Grade 3
Master Class V (Trading)
Master Class 5 (Fishing)
Master Class 5 (Trading and Fishing)
|Master <24m NC||Skipper Coastal/Offshore endorsed to carry 12 or more passengers; restricted to deck capacity only (unless also holds minimum MED 3)|
|Master Class 4
Skipper Grade 2
Master Class IV (Trading)
Master Class IV (Fishing)
|Master <35m NC||Skipper Coastal/Offshore restricted to deck capacity only (unless also holds minimum MED 3)
Skipper Restricted Limits endorsed for vessels <500GT
|Mate Class 4
Mate Class IV (Fishing)
Mate Class IV (Trading)
|Mate <80m NC||Skipper Restricted Limits endorsed less than 24m; restricted to serve as Mate Near Coastal|
|Master Class 3
Skipper Grade 1
Master Class III Trading)
Master Class III (Fishing)
|Master <80m NC||Skipper Coastal/Offshore restricted to deck capacity only (unless also holds minimum MED 3)|
|Marine Engine Driver Grade 3||Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC||Marine Engineer Class 6|
|Marine Engine Driver Grade 2||Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC||Marine Engineer Class 5|
|Marine Engine Driver Grade 1||Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 NC||Marine Engineer Class 4|
If your certificate is unlisted - please contact us with a scanned copy of your certificate, including details.
Australian STCW certificates eligible for recognition
|Australian certificate||Equivalent New Zealand STCW certificate|
|Able Seaman||Able Seafarer Deck|
|Deck Rating||Deck Watch Rating|
|Master less than 3000 GT||Master on ships less than 3000GT|
|Master less than 500 GT||Master on ships less than 500GT|
|Chief Mate||Chief Mate|
|Chief Mate less than 3000 GT||Chief Mate on ships less than 3000GT|
|Mate less than 500 GT||Chief Mate on ships less than 500GT|
|GMDSS General Operator’s Certificate||GMDSS Radio Operator|
|Engineer Watchkeeper - Steam||Marine Engineer Class 3 (Steam certificate)|
|Engineer Watchkeeper - Motor||Marine Engineer Class 3 (Motor certificate)|
|Engineer Watchkeeper - Steam & Motor||Marine Engineer Class 3 (combined motor and steam certificate)|
|Engineer Class 2 – Steam||Marine Engineer Class 2 (Steam certificate)|
|Engineer Class 2 – Motor||Marine Engineer Class 2 (Motor certificate)|
|Engineer Class 2 - Steam & Motor||Marine Engineer Class 2 (combined motor and steam certificate)|
|Engineer Class 1 – Steam||Marine Engineer Class 1 (Steam certificate)|
|Engineer Class 1 – Motor||Marine Engineer Class 1 (Motor certificate)|
|Engineer Class 1 - Steam & Motor||Marine Engineer Class 1 (combined motor and steam certificate)|
If your STCW certificate is unlisted - please contact us with a scanned copy of your certificate, including details.
Read about the background of SeaCert and its aims to provide competency-based systems that better suit seafarers in NZ.