MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) together with the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ), and several representatives from the Magsaysay Maritime Corporation welcomed home 327 Filipino seafarers at NAIA Terminal 1 last Sunday, 5 April 2020.
The 327 repatriated Filipino seafarers were aboard the cruise ships Costa Diadema and Costa Victoria which have docked in Italy. Two representatives from the Magsaysay Maritime Corporation, the manning agency in charge of the seafarers onboard the said ships, facilitated the disembarkation process.
The Filipino seafarers were immediately transported to the hotels where they will be accommodated while they undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine to rule out the possibility of COVID-19 cases. Representatives from the BOQ conducted an orientation for the seafarers while the Bureau of Immigration (BI) also took charge of processing their documents.
A representative from the Magsaysay Maritime Corporation mentioned that they will repatriate around 2 000 more Filipino seafarers who are currently stranded on cruise ships that they handle around the world.
For MARINA’s part, the agency is constantly coordinating with Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) by providing information using the MARINA Online Covid-19 Monitoring Form. With this, OWWA, through its Tulong sa Marino program, will extend help to all seafarers stranded in Metro Manila regardless of their status – whether they are active, inactive, returning, on training or unemployed.
The MARINA assures the public that efforts are continuously being made with other concerned agencies to bring home stranded Filipino seafarers aboard vessels that have been disrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.