While talking to reporters, he said that there is scope to retrain several people, located along the coast, as seafarers.

This comes as data provided by the Indian Ministry of Shipping earlier in 2019 showed an unprecedented growth of 35% at the number of Indian seafarers employed on Indian or foreign flag vessels last year. The figure rose from 154,349 in 2017 to 208,799 in 2018.

Along with this, the number of students placed for onboard training also increased from 14,307 last year to 19,545 this year, showing a jump of nearly 37%.

This growth has been possible due to a series of measures taken by the Government in the last four years to improve the standards of maritime training and increase on-board training opportunities, while improving the examination and certification system and facilitating ease of doing business.

In this regard, the Ministry has already made maritime training institutes responsible for providing practical training to seafarers.

India is now one of the top suppliers for seafarers worldwide, after the Philippines and China.

Another focus area for the ministry will be implementing international best practices at Alang shipbreaking yard, he was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

Alang, located near Bhavnagar in Gujarat, is another high employment generation sector, but is at the centre of a global criticism by environmental groups due to improper working conditions, along with Bangladesh.