Electro Technical Officer

Elevating maritime safety and efficiency through electrical innovation


An Electro-Technical Officer (ETO) in the merchant navy is a vital member of a ship's technical team. The role of an ETO combines electrical and electronic engineering expertise with maritime knowledge. ETOs are responsible for the maintenance, repair, and operation of electrical and electronic systems and equipment onboard merchant vessels.

One of the primary responsibilities of an ETO is to ensure the smooth functioning of the ship's electrical power generation and distribution systems. The ETOs maintain and repair electrical motors, generators, switchboards, transformers, and other electrical components. ETOs also handle the ship's lighting systems, navigation lights, and emergency power systems, ensuring they are in proper working order.

ETOs play a crucial role in managing the vessel's communication and navigation systems. They are responsible for maintaining and troubleshooting the ship's radar systems, satellite communication systems, radio equipment, and electronic chart display and information systems (ECDIS). ETOs also assist in the setup and maintenance of the ship's global positioning system (GPS) and automatic identification system (AIS).



To become an Electro-Technical Officer (ETO) in the merchant navy, certain eligibility criteria must be met. While specific requirements may vary based on country and shipping company, here are the prerequisites:

  • Educational Qualifications: One should have completed a 4-year Bachelor's degree or a 3-year diploma in Electrical/Electronics/Control Engineering or a related field from a recognized institution. 
  • Age Limit: Typically, aspirants should be between 17 and 25 years of age at the time of admission to a maritime training institution. However, age limits may vary among countries and institutions.
  • Medical Fitness: Applicants must meet the medical and physical fitness standards set by the maritime authorities. 
  • Eyesight Requirements: Seekers should have satisfactory vision in both eyes, with or without corrective lenses, and normal colour vision. 
  • English Language Proficiency: Proficiency in the English language is essential for effective communication and safety onboard. 
  • STCW Certification: Aspirants must complete the required Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping (STCW) courses as per the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping for Seafarers. These courses include Basic Training, Proficiency in Survival Craft and Rescue Boats, Medical First Aid, and others.
  • Additional Certifications: Depending on the country and shipping company, seekers may be required to obtain additional certifications related to electrical and electronic systems, such as High Voltage Safety and Switchboard Management.

It is important to note that eligibility requirements can vary among countries, institutions, and shipping companies. It is recommended to check the specific requirements of the institution or company where you plan to pursue your ETO training.

Job Roles

The Electro-Technical Officer (ETO) in the merchant navy holds a critical role in ensuring the smooth operation of electrical and electronic systems onboard the vessel. Here are some of the key job roles and responsibilities of an ETO:

  • Electrical and Electronic Systems Maintenance
  • Machinery Control and Automation
  • Emergency Response and Safety
  • Troubleshooting and Diagnostics
  • Planned Maintenance
  • Collaboration and Communication
  • Equipment Procurement and Inventory Management
  • Compliance with Regulations

Top Recruiters

In India, several shipping companies and maritime organisations recruit Electro-Technical Officers (ETOs) for the merchant navy. Here are some of the top recruiters:

  • The Shipping Corporation of India Ltd (SCI)
  • Great Eastern Shipping Company Ltd
  • Essar Shipping Ltd
  • MOL Maritime (India) Pvt. Ltd
  • Anglo-Eastern Ship Management Ltd
  • Fleet Management Ltd
  • NYK Ship Management Pvt. Ltd
  • V-Ships India Pvt. Ltd
  • Wallem Ship Management Ltd
  • Executive Ship Management Pvt. Ltd


The salary of an Electro-Technical Officer in the merchant navy can vary depending on several factors such as experience and the specific area of expertise within the maritime. Here are some general salary ranges for an Electro-Technical Officer in the merchant navy:

Level of Salary

Annual Level Salary 

Starting Salary

Approx ₹10,00,000

Mid Level Salary

Approx ₹14,00,000

Senior Level Salary

Approx ₹30,00,000


  • Electrical and Electronic Expertise
  • Technical Troubleshooting
  • Safety Awareness
  • Analytical and Problem-Solving Skills
  • Communication and Teamwork
  • Adaptability and Flexibility
  • Time Management and Organisational Skills
  • Continuous Learning and Professional Development
  • Leadership Abilities


The career scope of an Electro-Technical Officer (ETO) in the merchant navy is promising and offers a wide range of opportunities for professional growth. ETOs play a crucial role in ensuring the smooth operation of electrical and electronic systems onboard ships. With the increasing demand for shipping and the continuous advancements in maritime technology, the career prospects for ETOs are favourable. 

ETOs have the opportunity to work on various types of vessels, travel to different ports around the world, and gain exposure to diverse cultures and environments. The career progression for ETOs is significant, with the possibility of advancing to higher ranks and taking on more senior positions within the engineering department. 

The maritime industry values continuous learning and professional development, providing ETOs with opportunities to acquire new skills, obtain specialised certifications, and stay updated with the latest industry trends. The competitive salaries, additional benefits, and transferable skills acquired as an ETO further enhance the career scope, allowing individuals to explore opportunities beyond the merchant navy in related industries.


  • Exciting and Global Career: Working as an ETO offers the opportunity to travel to different countries and experience diverse cultures. 
  • Technological Advancements: ETOs work with advanced electrical and electronic systems, automation technology, and cutting-edge equipment. 
  • Competitive Salary and Benefits: ETOs are generally offered competitive salaries in the merchant navy, along with additional benefits such as paid leave, medical insurance, retirement plans, and allowances. The financial rewards can be attractive, especially considering the international nature of the job.
  • Career Progression: The maritime industry offers ample opportunities for career progression. 
  • Transferable Skills: The skills acquired as an ETO are transferable to other industries beyond the merchant navy.


  • Challenging Work Environment: Working in the merchant navy can be physically demanding and mentally challenging. 
  • Isolation and Loneliness: Being away from family and friends for extended periods can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. 
  • Work-Life Balance: The nature of the job can sometimes make it challenging to maintain a work-life balance. 
  • Safety Risks: The maritime industry carries inherent risks, including the potential for accidents, emergencies, and exposure to hazardous situations. 
  • Continuous Learning and Competitiveness: ETOs must stay updated with evolving technologies, regulations, and industry practices.