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Maritime NZ Second Engineer (MEC 2, MEC 2 < 3000kW, and MEC 2 ECE) Certificate of Competency (MNZ SeaCert & STCW) Requirements for New Zealand Seafarers

second engineer

The Second Engineer is the engineer officer next in rank to the chief engineer officer, with responsibility for the ship’s mechanical propulsion and for the operation and maintenance of its mechanical and electrical installations in the event of incapacity of the chief engineer officer. There are three types of certification available - Marine Engineer Class 2 (MEC 2), Marine Engineer Class 2 < 3000kW (MEC 2 < 3000kW), and Marine Engineer Class 2 endorsed chief engineer (MEC 2 ECE)

For these certificates, you can choose to qualify on either motor-powered or steam-powered engines, or on both types of engine. Your sea service and training must be appropriate for the type of propulsion power, and your certificate will show the type of main engine propulsion power you are qualified to operate on as second engineer.

From MEC 2, with additional sea service, training and assessment one can progress to MEC 2 endorsed chief engineer or to MEC 1. From MEC 2 < 3000kW, with additional sea service, training and assessment one can progress to MEC 2 or MEC 2 endorsed chief engineer. From MEC 2 ECE, with additional sea service, training and assessment you can progress to MEC 1. Refer to the guideline for MEC 1 for the detailed certificate requirements.

container ship engine

You may also read: International Maritime Organization (IMO) STCW requirements for Second Engineer

Maritime NZ Second Engineer General Requirements


  • Medically fit and have good eyesight
  • Good character and a fit and proper person
  • Meet the requirements for certification
  • Meet the sea service requirements
  • Attend and pass training course
  • Must have certificates for the ancillary proficiencies
  • Pass MNZ’s final exam

Maritime New Zealand Second Engineer (MEC 2) Requirements

  •  Age: Minimum 19 years
  • This certificate corresponds with the certificate for second engineer on ships powered by main propulsion machinery of 3000kW propulsion power or more, issued under regulation III/2 of the International Convention on the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, as amended in 2010 (STCW).
  • With a MEC 2 certificate, you can perform the functions and duties of second engineer on ships of any main propulsion power in any operating area or as a chief engineer on fishing ships of any propulsion power in any operating area.

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2) Prior Certification Requirements

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2) Sea Service Requirements

  • Complete all of your sea service as an engineering officer (exercising the role of MEC 3) in the engine department, while holding your MEC 3 or equivalent certificate and complete at least 12 months’ approved sea service performing engine room watchkeeping duties on commercial ships or New Zealand warships with propulsion power of 750kW or more. You must also complete one of the following options:
  • Option 1 (certifying motor propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on a motor ship (a ship with diesel main propelling machinery) with propulsion power of 750kW or more
  • Option 2 (certifying steam propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on a steam ship with propulsion power of 750kW or more
  • Option 3 (certifying combined motor and steam propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on motor ships with propulsion power of 750kW or more, and at least six months on steam ships with propulsion power of 750kW or more.

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2) Training and Exam Requirements

  • You must attend and pass an approved MEC 2 training course to achieve all of the required competencies at the management level, as specified in section A-III/2 of the STCW Code.
  • The New Zealand Maritime School offers options for completing MEC 2 and MEC 1 training separately or together.

Maritime New Zealand Second Engineer (MEC 2 < 3000kW) Requirements

  • Age: Minimum 18 years
  • This certificate corresponds with the certificate for second engineer on ships powered by main propulsion machinery of 750–3000kW propulsion power, issued under regulation III/3 of the STCW. With MEC 2 <3000kW, you can perform the functions and duties of a second engineer on ships with main propulsion machinery under 3000kW in any operating area.

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2 < 3000kW) Prior Certification Requirements

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2 < 3000kW) Sea Service Requirements

  • Complete at least 12 months’ approved sea service on commercial ships or New Zealand warships with propulsion power of 750kW or more and
  • Complete all of your sea service in the engine department completing duties appropriate to your MEC 3 certificate as either an engineer officer or an assistant engineer officer, while holding your MEC 3 or equivalent certificate.
  • All of your sea service must have been completed in the 10 years immediately before your MEC2 < 3000kW certificate is issued.

MNZ Second Engineer (MEC 2 < 3000kW) Training and Exam Requirements

  • The training will need to meet the competencies required at the management level, as specified in section AIII/3 of the STCW Code. Training at the level specified for the MEC 2 certificate (section A-III/2 of STCW) would be accepted, as this covers vessels of any size and propulsion power.
  • You must pass a final examination (currently an oral examination) by an MNZ-approved examiner.

Maritime New Zealand Second Engineer (MEC 2 ECE) Requirements

  • Age: Minimum 19 years
  • This certificate corresponds with the certificate for second engineer on ships powered by main propulsion machinery of between 750kW and 3000kW propulsion power or more, issued under regulation III/3 of the STCW.
  • With this certificate, you can perform the functions and duties of chief engineer on ships powered by main propulsion machinery of less than 3000kW in any operating area or second engineer on ships powered by main propulsion machinery of any power in any operating area, if you already hold a MEC 2 certificate or equivalent.

MNZ Endorsed Chief Engineer (MEC 2 ECE) Prior Certification Requirements

  • You must hold a current MEC 2 or MEC 2 < 3000kW certificate of competency or equivalent

MNZ Endorsed Chief Engineer (MEC 2 ECE) Sea Service Requirements

  • complete all of your sea service in the engine department while holding your MEC 2 or MEC 2 < 3000kW or equivalent certificate and complete at least 12 months’ approved sea service while performing watchkeeping duties as second engineer in the engine department on commercial ships or New Zealand warships with propulsion power of 750kW or more. Your sea service must also include one of the following:
  • Option 1 (for a certificate designating motor propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on a motor ship or steam ship (with diesel the main propulsion machinery)
  • Option 2 (for a certificate designating steam propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on a steam ship
  • Option 3 (for a certificate designating combined motor and steam propulsion): at least six months’ sea service on motor ships with propulsion power of 750kW or more, and at least six months on steam ships with propulsion power of 750kW or more.

MNZ Endorsed Chief Engineer (MEC 2 ECE) Training and Exam Requirements

  • There is no specific training course for MEC 2 ECE, as the competencies for this certificate should have been covered by either your MEC 2 training (to standards defined in STCW Code section A-III/2) or your MEC 2 < 3000kW training (to standards defined in STCW Code section A-III/3). Note that the second engineer competencies include being capable of taking over as chief engineer if he or she becomes incapacitated.

MNZ Second Engineer Ancillary Certificates

mnz second engineer ancillary certificates
Table: Maritime NZ Second Engineer Ancillary Certificate Requirements - Credits: MNZ

  • MNZ strongly recommends that you also get an ancillary certificate for proficiency in security awareness training (STCW A-VI/6-1.1) to work on any ship that the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code applies to.

Disclaimer: For general information purpose - please check with Maritime NZ for the latest requirements and accurate info

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