The Philippine Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) is expected to comply with the standards set by the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) as it started implementing corrective actions on EMSA’s 2017 audit findings on the Philippine maritime education, training, and certification systems.
MARINA is set to present proof of their compliance to EMSA, which include supportive legislation, inter-agency cooperation, responsive national provision, and good governance measures on the administration of maritime education and training programs, assessment of competence, and issuance of International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification, and Watch keeping for Seafarers or STCW certifications.
“The pieces of evidence that we will present to the European Commission (EC) are testament of MARINA’s proactive approach on the issues confronting the Philippine maritime industry,” said MARINA Administrator Rey Leonardo Guerrero.
Guerrero said these measures would address the areas for improvement emphasized by the European Commission (EC) in terms of national provision, maritime administration, requirements for certification, as well as maritime education and training institution in the Philippines.
A part of the major actions by MARINA is the extensive review and revision of seven existing national provisions and the development of six training course packages which are ready for implementation.
Another essential part of the report is President Rodrigo Duterte’s issuance of Executive Order (EO) No. 63 that further strengthens the authority of the MARINA as the single maritime administration, particularly in the implementation of the 1978 International Convention on STCW.
Guerrero said the executive order is a manifestation of national support, which harmonizes the administration of maritime education programs and fostering inter-agency cooperation framework among various government agencies such as the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Department of Health (DOH), and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).
“MARINA is doing the final works for the launching of an integrated information technology (IT) system to be known as the MARINA Integrated Seafarer Management Online (MISMO) system, a digital platform that will integrate the agency’s services and processes online.”
The major features of MISMO include the online issuance of seaman’s book, online payment and processing for assessment and certifications, internal quality management control system in the implementation of maritime education and training programs, as well as online verification to ensure authenticity of seafarer-related documents issued by the Philippine government.