MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) has strengthened its collaboration with the government agencies and the private sector whose interests are anchored on the overseas shipping industry.

In a meeting with the involved stakeholders, the MARINA highlighted the importance of active cooperation and collaboration in achieving the plans and programs for the maritime industry, specifically those under the 10-year maritime industry development plan (MIDP).

Engr. Ramon Hernandez of the MARINA – Shipyards Regulation Service (SRS) shared the prospective industry and economic impacts of the establishment of the first-ever global maritime hub, which is the Priority Program #5 of the 10-year MIDP.

Engr. Hernandez emphasized that the global maritime hub shall promote the Philippine flag registry, develop the Philippines as transshipment and bunkering hub in the Southeast Asian Region, upgrade and expand local shipyards, as well as lead to the establishment of an eco-industrial maritime park and maritime training and research center.

“The implementation of the MIDP will lead to the development of the maritime industry and consequently contribute to the growth of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). The MIDP priority programs shall only mean good and positive to the country’s maritime industry as we strive to reform, revitalize and innovate for the future,” Engr. Hernandez said.

Furthermore, Atty. Jean Ver Pia of the MARINA – OSS discussed the activities under the different components of having an attractive Philippine registry which is one of the projects under the Priority Program #5: Establishment of the Global Maritime Hub of the 10-year MIDP.

These include the: (1) Strengthening of regional and international cooperation such as with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other similar bilateral agreements to support the competitive position of Philippine Flag Vessels; (2) Strengthening of shipping services for Philippine export and import trade transportation; (3) Development and promotion of ship financing schemes, and incentives for ship owning and shipping industry; (4) Review and improvement of bare-boat chartering program and ship mortgage law; (5) Strengthening of ship management, ship brokerage, ship handling and ship insurance services; and (6) Strengthening of the maritime administration through ratification and implementation of international maritime instruments and restructuring of MARINA.

The conceptual framework of the Maritime Safety Campaign was also discussed by Dir. Jose Venancio Vero of the MARINA – Maritime Safety Service (MSS), highlighting how it will ensure the strict and full compliance of Philippine-registered ships plying the international trade with significant IMO instruments relating to safety, security and marine environmental protection. This will ensure the facilitation of trade and commerce as it prevents the unnecessary interdiction of Philippine-registered ships by foreign port State control inspectors.

Finally, the MARINA also talked about the draft amendments to the MARINA circulars on the “Rules in the Acquisition of Ships under Presidential Decree (PD) 760, as amended, “Rules on the Accreditation of Maritime Enterprises”, and “Omnibus Rules on the Issuance of Special Permit for the Temporary Utilization of Philippine-registered ships whether Trading Overseas or Domestic” respectively.

The meeting ended with the re-launching of the MARINA – OSS online registration system to promote ease and convenience in doing business in the overseas shipping industry.