The Philippines yesterday expressed confidence it can complete the corrective actions on the deficiencies noted by the European Commission’s Maritime Safety Agency or EMSA, in its assessment of the country’s compliance with the STCW Convention on the system concerning seafarers’ education, training, and certification, ahead of the August date for submitting report.
“The Maritime Training Council, Professional Regulation Commission, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, and the Commission on Higher Education have been working closely and doubly hard to undertake the corrective actions on the deficiencies and shall be submitting the report by the end of the month,” DOLE Acting Secretary Danilo P. Cruz said.
“We are fully confident that we can address these deficiencies and submit the report before the end of August,” he added.
Cruz said that as a party to the STCW Convention, and having an existing agreement with European Union member states concerning recognition of certificates of seafarers under Resolution 1/10, the Philippines’s training and certification system is subject to assessment by the EMSA.
EMSA inspectors have visited the country to verify the Philippines’ compliance with the training education, and certification system under the STCW Convention.
The deficiencies that the EMSA inspectors noted were those relating to maritime administration, monitoring of maritime education, and training institutions (METIs); requirements for seafarers’ certification; management level course; and other findings relating to METIs.
“The corrective actions we have undertaken are directed towards ensuring the continued improvement in the quality of education and training and competencies of our seafarers,” the labor and employment acting chief said.
He expressed further confidence that after receiving the Philippines’s report, the EU will continue its recognition of the country’s education, training, and certification of seafarers under the STCW Convention.
The Philippines has bilateral agreements on certification of seafarers with 12 European member states, namely: Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxemborg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Sweden.
In 2009, deployed Filipino seafarers to ships in EU member-states’ flags of registry reached 79,111.