Basis on which contributions are calculated

1.1. Social security contributions

Basis: Legislative Order 07/02/1945, art. 3, Royal Decree 13/01/2014, Flemish Government Orders 13/11/2015, Flemish Government Order 23/09/2016

1.1.1. Employer contributions

The social security contributions shall be calculated on the basis of the seafarer's wage. The seafarer's wage is understood to refer to: the standard pay plus overtime and all allowances that are allocated to the person concerned.

1.1.2. Employee contributions for seafarers employed on sea-going ships registered in a Member State of the EEA

The contributions of seafarers who are employed on sea-going ships that are registered in a Member State of the EEA (see ‘Registers of Member States of the EEA’, below) shall be calculated on the seafarer's wage, with a ceiling of the amount that applies in the pension scheme and applied during the calendar year prior to the current year. The annual wage ceiling for the year 2017 is set at 55.657,47 euro.

The aforementioned ceiling applies to contributions for seafarers that are employed by an employer belonging to the maritime dredging sector, on sea-going dredging ships with their own propulsion which are equipped to transport a cargo on the sea, for which a certificate of registry is provided in a Member State of the EEA, and whereby at least 50% of operating time involves transport at sea.

The aforementioned ceiling also applies to contributions from seafarers who are employed on seaworthy dredgers, which are registered in a Member State of the European Economic Area, whereby at least 50% of operating time involves transport at sea. A proportionate share of the waiting time shall be eligible as sea transport for the calculation of the intended threshold of 50%.

In relation to shipping companies in the merchant shipping sector, this regime shall only apply if the shipowner has an operating base in the Flemish Region.

Registers of the Member States of the EEA

Registers of Member States include:

  • all primary registers of Member States
  • the following registers that are localised in Member States and are subject to the law thereof:
    • DIS: the Danish International Register of Shipping,
    • ISR: the German International Register of Shipping,
    • MAR: the International Register of Shipping of Madeira,
    • the Italian International Register of Shipping,
    • the Register for the Canary Islands,
    • the Registers of the Kerguelen, the Dutch Antilles, the Isle of Man, Bermuda, Cayman (under conditions as set out in point 2.2, second paragraph of the Guidelines),
    • Register of Gibraltar.

1.1.3. Employee contributions for seafarers employed on sea-going ships not registered in a Member State of the EEA

The social security contributions shall be calculated on the basis of the seafarer's wage. The seafarer's wage is understood to refer to: the standard pay plus overtime and all allowances that are allocated to the person concerned.

1.2. Industrial accident premium

Basis: W. 10/04/1971

The industrial accident insurance premium and the surcharge for reintegration of disabled persons will be calculated on a fixed basic wage (see 1.4) depending on the rank of the seafarer.

1.3. Additional premium for time spent in a war zone or risk of piracy

Basis: Royal Decree 28/12/1971, art. 6bis

A) Premium for zone with increased risk of piracy

Since 15 June 2015, merchant shipowners have had to pay an additional premium to Fedris to cover the risk of piracy. The premium amounts to 0.164% of the basic wage per person per day spent in the ‘increased risk’ zone as set out in the decision by the Committee for Merchant Shipping of 21 April 2015 to activate the CLA for piracy, i.e. the Gulf of Aden + 400 nautical miles from the east coast of Somalia with the borders:

  • to the west: coastline on the border of Djibouti and Somalia to position 11 48 N, 45 E; from 12.00N, 45 E to Mayyun Island in the Bab El Mandeb Straits;
  • to the east: from Rhiy di-Irisal to Socotra Island to position 14 18 N, 53 E, from 14.30 E to the coastline on the border between Yemen and Oman, together with a zone of 400 miles from the east coast of Somalia, i.e. from Socotra Island downwards to the border with Kenya in the south.

An additional premium for remaining in a zone with an increased risk of piracy of 0.164% of the basic wage per person per day spent in the zone is owed from 7 July 2015 for remaining in the Gulf of Guinea and, more specifically, the territorial waters of Benin and Nigeria, including the ports and terminals, the delta area of the Niger river, the inland waterways and port facilities, except if the ship is safely moored in a monitored port area. The day of entering and the day of exiting the zone shall both be regarded as full days unless entry and exit occur on the same day.

B) Premium for zone with reduced risk of piracy

An additional piracy premium of 0.016% of the basic wage for remaining in the zone with a lower risk of piracy, in accordance with the area within which the Royal Decree of 11 February 2013 permits the use of private security, and this borders the area where an additional piracy premium is already provided at a rate of 0.164% of the basic wage.

The RD of 11 February 2013 expands the area in which there is permission to engage a maritime security company to protect the ship against piracy to the sea area in the Gulf of Guinea, from the border of the territorial waters of the relevant coastal states and borders the sea via connecting the coordinates:

  1. 17° 20’ 00 Z, 11° 50’ 00 O
  2. 17° 20’ 00 Z, 10° 00’ 00 O
  3. 10° 00’ 00 Z, 10° 00’ 00 O
  4. 0° 00’ 00 Z, 0° 00’ 00 O
  5. 0° 00’ 00 Z, 10°00’ 00 W
  6. 10° 00’ 00 N, 20° 00’ 00 W
  7. 20° 45’ 00 N, 20° 00’ 00 W
  8. 20° 45’ 00 N, 17° 00’ 00 W

The day of entering and the day of exiting the zone shall both be regarded as full days unless entry and exit occur on the same day.

C) War zone premium

An additional premium for remaining in a war zone of 0.328% of the basic wage per person per day spent in the zone is payable from 7 July 2015 for remaining in the ports of Yemen: a ship is considered to be in the war zone from the moment that is moors to the time at which it leaves its moorings. The day of entering and the day of exiting the war zone (...) shall both be regarded as full days unless entry and exit occur on the same day.

1.4. Fixed wages and industrial accident premiums

Officers In euro
Deck
Captain 43.460,34
First officer 43.460,34
Second officer 43.460,34
Third officer 43.460,34
Fourth officer 43.460,34
Junior officer 43.460,34
Junior seaman 43.460,34
First mate 43.460,34
Second mate 43.460,34
Machine
First (head) engineer 43.460,34
Second engineer 43.460,34
Third engineer 43.460,34
Fourth engineer 43.460,34
Fifth engineer 43.460,34
First electrician 43.460,34
Junior engineer 43.460,34
IT engineer 43.460,34
Junior IT engineer 43.460,34
Shipmate In euro
Pumpman 43.460,34
Boatswain 43.460,34
First cook 43.460,34
Cook and steward 43.460,34
Cook boatswain 43.460,34
Seaman 40.829,79
Able seaman 43.460,34
Able seaman/wiper 43.460,34
Wiper/seaman 43.460,34
Second cook/baker 43.460,34
Steward(ess) with over a year's service 43.460,34
Shortsea: officers In euro
Deck
Captain 43.460,34
First officer 32.904,44
Officer of the watch 23.660,74
Junior officer 18.560,06
Machine
First engineer 43.460,34
Second engineer 32.904,44
Officer engineer of the watch 23.660,74
Junior engineer 18.560,06
Shortsea: shipmates In euro
Boatswain 18.560,06
Cook 18.560,06
Seaman 18.560,06
Steward 18.560,06
Shortsea: passenger ships In euro
Officer 27.364,15
First cook 23.380,75
Entertainer 19.525,05
Nanny 19.525,05
Head steward 19.525,05
Kitchen assistant 18.560,06
Electrician 18.560,06
Waiter 18.560,06
Linen room assistant 18.560,06
Barman 18.560,06
Dish washer 18.560,06
Shoregang In euro
Officers (deck and machine room) 43.460,34
Dock supervisor (officer) 43.460,34
Boatswain 43.460,34
Carpenter 43.460,34
Donkeyman 43.460,34
Chief steward 43.460,34
First cook 43.460,34
Dock supervisor (category A) 43.460,34
Rigger 43.460,34
Sailmaker 43.460,34
Maintenance indoor/outdoor 43.460,34
Mooring man 43.460,34
Waiter 43.460,34
Steward 43.460,34
Dock supervisor (category B) 43.460,34

1.5. Special contribution for social security

Basis: act 30/03/1994

The act of 30 March 1994 implements a special contribution for social security for the account of the employees. This contribution varies according to the employee's wage rate and family circumstances (single or a family with two incomes). The amount of the contribution is proportionate to the annual taxable family income. The administration for direct taxes implements the annual, definitive tax settlement. The amounts paid to the NSSO are therefore advances for the annual contribution.

The amount is deducted from the net monthly wage of the employee. This deduction includes:

  • 9.30 euro for the employee whose spouse also has a working income and whose monthly wage lies between 1,095.10 euro and 1,945.38 euro;
  • 7.60% of the share of the monthly wage that exceeds 1,945.38 euro, and lies between 1,945.38 euro and 2,190.18 euro. The deduction is, however, at least 9.30 euro for an employee whose spouse also has a working income.
  • 18.60 euro increased by 1.10% of the share of the monthly wage that exceeds 2,190.18 euro and insofar as this monthly wage is lies between 2,190.19 euro and 6,038.82 euro. The overall deduction, however, for an employee whose spouse also has a working income may not exceed 51.64 euro per month;
  • 51.64 euro if the monthly wage exceeds 6,038.82 euro and if the spouse of the employee also has a working income;
  • 60.94 euro if the monthly wage exceeds 6,038.82 euro and if the employee is single or the spouse of the employee does not have a working income.

1.6. Reduction of employee's contribution for employees with low wages (work bonus)

Basis: act 20/12/1999

The act of 20 December 1999 implements a system, as of 1 July 2000, of reducing employees' contributions. The intention is to guarantee employees with a low wage a higher net wage, without increasing the gross wage.

The work bonus comprises a fixed amount that is gradually reduced as the wage increases. Further information about the work bonus (in French) can be found in the NSSO's administrative instructions.

1.7. Non-statutory contributions

Non-statutory contributions for financing the 'Social Security Fund’ in the Belgian merchant shipping sector are owed either in the form of a contribution percentage levied on the social security wage, or in the form of a fixed amount per day for which statutory social security contributions are owed.

The NSSO informs the shipping companies about the non-statutory contributions owed, but is not responsible for collection.

Title Files
Calculation sheet Model B: Non-statutory contributions Belgian flag Download
Calculation sheet Model B: Non-statutory contributions EU register Download
Calculation sheet Model B: Non-statutory contributions NON-EU register Download