Scarce or Critical Maritime Skills

What is that 1 skill or position your organisation desperately needs, or need more of?

We always hear the terms scarce and critical skills – What does that really mean?  Who decides? What is their definition of scarce and critical?  Is it the same as the definition we use when completing our WSPs and ATRs and are we thus really addressing the skills gap, which we perceive to have in our organisations?


Following below are various definitions of scarce and critical, as defined by different Bodiesor Institutions–

  • TETA:

    “Scarce skills are actually occupations in demand while critical skills refer to skills gap within occupations.” Refer to: TETA Sector Skills Plan (SSP)_31_January 2014

  • AgriSETA:

    “Scarce and Critical Skills refers to an absolute or relative demand, current or future, for skilled, qualified and experienced people to fill particular roles/professions, occupations or specialisations in the labour market.” See: Department of Labour Definitions

  • SkillsPortal:

    “Scarce and Critical skills are defined as “an absolute or relative demand: current or in future; for skilled; qualified and experienced people to fill particular roles / professions, occupations or specialisations in the labour market.” Reference:

  • Department of Labour:

    “defining ‘scarce‘ and ‘critical‘ skills. In respect of the agreed definition refers to an absolute or relative demand: current or in future; for skilled; qualified and experienced people to fill particular roles/professions, occupations or specialisations in the labour market.” – Read the Department of Labour’s report: 3-Scarce and Critical Skill (2)

  • Career Navigator:

    “A scarce skill is a qualification or job for which there are too few available people in South Africa to do the job. Studying for a scarce skill, providing it is suited to you, would not only mean helping your country, but also helping yourself! Scarcity in a specific qualifications or job can be attributable to the fact that the occupation is newly created and therefore very few people have studied in that direction.” – See: Scarce Skills list on Career Navigator.

  • Work Info:

    Scarce skills are usually measured in terms of occupation or qualification. Both ‘occupation’ and ‘qualification’ have the merit of being relatively straightforward to measure and readily understood. [The term scarce skills refers to those occupations characterised by a scarcity of qualified and experienced people (current and anticipated) – in other words, occupations in which numerical imbalances exist in employment because of a difference between the demand for and the supply of skills.]” – Defining ‘scarce’ and ‘critical’ skills

  • Work Info:

    Critical skills refer to particular capabilities needed within an occupation, for example, general management skills, communication and customer handling skills, team-work skills, communication technology skills. [The term critical skills refers to particular skills within an occupation, or the qualitative deficiencies that may exist or develop in the skills apparatus of the existing workforce.] –

Let me ask you again…

What is the skill or position your organisation desperately needs to fill
What is on your Maritime Skills Wish List?

We need to look at the root cause for skills being scarce or critical. In the South African Maritime Industry there are numerous scarce and critical skills, and the reasons in some cases, are just as numerous.

Through Government initiatives such as Operation ‘Hurray Up’ (aka Operation Phakisa), efforts are being made to fast track the unblocking of blockages that hamper the growth of the Maritime Industry and unlocking the economic potential of South Africa’s Oceans.

Skills development is a major focus area. 130 000+ jobs are said to have been created by 2030. How many of those jobs will be specifically targeted to meet your individual organisational needs?

Maritime Training Enterprise (MTE), was established out of a passion to seeing lives transformed through quality training, human capital development, and the acquisition of a broader range of specialist skills that prepare graduates for gainful employment in the Maritime Industry and beyond – thus the driving force behind establishing thís ‘Enterprise’

Please drop us a line to let us have your Maritime Skills Wish List…
and we will endeavour to wave our magic wand…

Waving our magig wand to fulfill your Maritime Skills Wishlist

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