MANILA, PHILIPPINES — The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the Philippine Navy (PN) signed on Tuesday, 18 May 2021, a memorandum of agreement (MOA ) cementing their cooperation in various related areas, such as training, subject matter exchanges, performance governance system, quality management and other areas that will benefit both Organizations and the country’s maritime industry.

MARINA Administrator Vice Admiral Robert A Empedrad AFP (Ret) and PN Flag Officer-in-Command Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo J Bacordo PN personally signed the MOA at the Philippine Navy Headquarters.

Administrator Empedrard was accompanied by VADM Rene Medina, Executive Director, Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Office (STCWO), Captain Jeffrey P Solon, Officer-in-Charge of the Office of the Deputy Administrator for Planning, former PN Vice Commander RADM Rey Dela Cruz PN (Ret), and Engr. Ramon C. Hernandez, Director of the Shipyards Regulation Service and Concurrent Director of the Maritime Safety Service. They were also joined by other representatives via videoconference, including Engr. Nannette Z. Villamor-Dinopol, Deputy Administrator for Operations of the MARINA.

Developed since last year through consistent dialogues, the MOA provides a framework for partnership arrangement between the MARINA and PN for purposes of providing technical assistance, and training and consultancy services that aim to support the sustained development of the Philippine maritime industry.

Citing a passage from the Holy Bible, Vice Admiral Empedrad expressed his eagerness to give the attention and support needed by the maritime industry, further emphasizing that its advancement is just of equal importance with that of land-based industries.

The MARINA and PN shall collaborate on the formulation of technical standards and training on the design and construction of naval vessels, which would be a critical contribution to the Modernization Program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. In addition, this initiative would capacitate more local shipbuilders in producing naval vessels and other floating assets that prioritize safety and functionality–a partial realization of several programs under the Maritime Industry Development Plan.

Aside from vessel design and construction, also covered by the agreement are capacity building assistance for the PN on mandatory international maritime instruments on maritime safety, security, and marine environment protection.