MANILA — Philippine President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has strongly echoed his administration’s mission to make the country’s maritime industry a top priority, during the first-ever Philippine Maritime Industry Summit 2023, 28 February 2023.

“Given that the Philippines is a maritime nation, I believe that it is time for us to make the maritime industry once again a top priority. While we already hold a dominant position in the world of global shipping, I certainly believe that we can do more, especially here at home.”

President Marcos Jr. also ensured the industry of his ‘unqualified support’ in building the maritime sector ‘that will be looked upon with admiration by the region and the rest of the world.’
The said event, organized by the Department of Transportation (DOTr), and the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) housed the updated Maritime Industry Development Plan (MIDP) 2028.

In a statement, DOTr Secretary Jaime J. Bautista emphasized that “the modernization of the country’s maritime industry deserves a strong push to keep us in step with global developments.”
The MIDP 2028 illustrates its alignment to our long-term vision as a nation, under the Ambisyon Natin 2040, the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028, the National Transport Policy, among others, MARINA Administrator Atty. Hernani N. Fabia stressed in his message.

The updated MIDP has three (3) Overriding Programs, (4) Core Programs, and one (1) Enabling Program, with the goals and outcomes of each program interrelated.

With a vision in mind of achieving a Strong and reliable Philippine Merchant Fleet that addresses the sea transport requirements of the archipelago in support of the national development agenda, the updated MIDP is a holistic approach that encourages synergy among industry key players—both from the private and government sectors, DOTr Undersecretary for Maritime, Elmer Francisco U. Sarmiento expressed.

The Overriding Programs include the Enhancement of Maritime Transport Safety and Security, the Promotion of an Environmentally Sustainable Maritime Industry, and the Implementation of a Sustainable Maritime Innovation, Transformation, Digitalization, and Knowledge Center.

Meanwhile, the Core Programs consist of the Modernization and Expansion of Domestic Shipping, including the Tourist Destination Areas and the Coastal Inland Waterways Transport System, Promotion and Expansion of Overseas Shipping, Modernization, Expansion, and Promotion of the Shipbuilding and Ship Repair Industry, and Promotion of Highly Skilled Maritime Workforce.

The MIDP targets to promote and expand the Philippine Maritime Industry by increasing access to safe, reliable, efficient, affordable, sustainable, and integrated sea transport systems for passengers and shippers, increasing the capacity and production of the shipbuilding and ship repair industry, and enhancing the employability of maritime workforce by reskilling and upskilling.

Further, the MARINA is inviting maritime stakeholders, policymakers, government officials, industry leaders, and maritime experts to participate in future discussions and collaborate towards the sustainable development of the Philippine Maritime Industry.

“The MARINA will organize series of focus group discussions to finalize our proposed measures and results matrices. And as part of our strategy shift, we will endeavor to visit you for further consultations on top of the virtual and face to face meetings that we will be holding,” MARINA Deputy Administrator for Planning Sonia B. Malaluan announced.

During the event, key players of the maritime industry has pledged their support for the MIDP 2028.