The establishment of the Bahamas Maritime Authority in 1995 created a dedicated professional body with greater flexibility to manage the already established Bahamas Register of Ships and is the prime reason why The Bahamas is now the leading registry for cruise ships.
The Bahamas’ reputation for quality and excellence means it is the trusted first option flag for many of the biggest players in international shipping. With offices in London, New York and Hong Kong, BMA provides round-the-clock support to shipowners and crew alike, dealing on a daily basis with registrations, manning and crew licences, investigation of casualties and follow-up on any port state interventions.
In 2003, the Bahamas Maritime Authority commenced a Maritime Cadet programme offering introductory information on seafaring to high school students. In 2008, Campbell Shipping Company Ltd., a world-renowned Bahamian Shipping Company, in partnership with The College of The Bahamas, established a Summer Maritime Camp for students entering 8th and 9th grades. This Camp which started in New Providence Island had overwhelming demand, and has now been launched in several Family Islands (Grand Bahama and Abaco). The camp introduces and exposes students to the maritime industry and informs them of educational requirements and options for careers in this field.
The interest in the Camps and the Bahamas Maritime Cadet Programme and the lack of adequate manpower in the industry locally and worldwide, moved Campbell Shipping to establish a local, tertiary-level training facility, the LJM Maritime Academy (LJMMA). The objective of the Institute is to make maritime education affordable to Bahamian youth.
Launched in November 2012, the LJMMA, a nonprofit institution, provides a unique and holistic learning experience designed along two strands: Engine or Deck (navigation) and is intended to be one of the nation’s pillars in stimulating and sustaining growth in the maritime sector. These programmes give students an overall exposure to the theory and practicalities of life on a ship and will lead the Bahamian Maritime Industry in offering excellent maritime education that adheres to industry standards.