MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) strengthens the Philippine Ship Registry through the implementation of the 10-year Maritime Industry Plan (MIDP), regular joint collaboration with the private stakeholders, and by being a responsible member of the international maritime community.

Being the country’s agency responsible in promoting and developing the Philippine maritime industry, the MARINA, through its 10-year MIDP, has targeted to address the key concerns in the country’s maritime sector through its integrated and holistic long term programs. One of its eight (8) priority programs is the establishment of maritime industrial hub which is intended to promote the country’s flag registry.

The MARINA also organizes workshops, consultations and conferences with private stakeholders to discuss and resolve prevalent challenges in the Philippine Ship Registry. One of which is the regular bi-annual meeting that is conducted to assess the overseas shipping sector’s overall situation, propose changes in the legal framework and/or revisions to national laws and circulars, among others.

These efforts led to the approval of House Bill (HB) 1286 entitled: an Act providing for the full and effective implementation and enforcement of international maritime instruments of which Philippines is a State party and HB 1288 entitled: An Act providing for the registration of ships and incentives therefor and other purposes. These proposed laws aim to strengthen the Philippine Ship Registry, as well as the implementation of rules and regulations for maritime safety and security, and the protection of the marine environment.

As a responsible member of the international maritime community, the Philippines continues to prepare for the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Member State Audit Scheme (IMSAS) scheduled in 2021. The MARINA has successfully conducted a mock audit and shortly thereafter, worked on the areas for improvements raised during the activity.

In 2018, the Philippines has ratified six (6) IMO conventions: 1) Protocol of 1997 to Amend the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973 as modified by the Protocol of 1978 Relating thereto (MARPOL Annex VI); 2) Protocol of 1978 Relating to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974, as amended (SOLAS PROT 1978); 3) Protocol of 1988 Relating to the International Convention on Load Lines, 1966 (Load Line Protocol 88); 4) Protocol of 1988 Relating to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974, as amended (SOLAS PROT 1988); 5) International Convention on the Control of Harmful Anti-Fouling Systems on Ships, 2001 (AFS 2001) and; 6) International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships Ballast Water Sediments, 2004 (BWM Convention).

Finally, the MARINA has also asserted its commitment to uphold its position to the IMO Council under Category C for 2020-2021 Biennium to prove its unwavering commitment in ensuring the full and complete compliance to IMO conventions. Countries elected under Category C have special interests in maritime transport and/or navigation.

The Philippines has been part of the IMO Council since 1997. Since then, the country has been an active contributor in drafting international rules and regulations for the development of the global maritime industry, especially in the field of maritime transport and/or navigation.