The Philippines expressed confidence it can correct the deficiencies noted by the European Commission’s Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) on the country’s compliance with international standards on seafarers’ education, training, and certification.
In a news release posted on the DOLE website on Friday, Acting Labor Secretary Danilo Cruz said the Philippines will most likely finish correcting ahead of the August deadline the deficiencies on maritime education and training.
The deficiencies were noted by the European Commission’s Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) as it assessed the Philippines' compliance with the STCW (Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping) Convention on the system concerning seafarers’ education, training, and certification.
“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," Cruz said.
“We are fully confident that we can address these deficiencies and submit the report before the end of August," he added.
EMSA inspectors 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 about:
- 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," Cruz said.
He also expressed confidence that after receiving the Philippines’ 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, including 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.