MANILA — In a significant development towards enhancing maritime safety, marine environmental protection and regulatory efficiency, Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) Administrator, Sonia Bautista Malaluan, underscored the commitment to stronger and more engaging partnership with the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) during her courtesy visit on PCG Commandant Admiral Ronnie Gil Latorilla Gavan Thursday, 28 December 2023.

Emphasizing the importance of robust collaboration, Administrator Malaluan stated, “MARINA is dedicated to fostering stronger connections with key agencies such as PCG and CHED (Commission on Higher Education). Our commitment is to maintain open lines of communication and work hand in hand with PCG to ensure the safety of passengers and vessels.”

PCG Commandant Admiral Ronnie Gil Latorilla Gavan reciprocated the sentiment, emphasizing the enduring partnership between PCG and MARINA. “There is no hierarchy; we encourage both agencies to progress in fulfilling their mandates,” remarked Commandant Gavan, advocating for a closer staff-to-staff engagement.

Acknowledging the significance of technological advancements, Administrator Malaluan announced the nationwide roll-out of digitalization initiative aimed at providing PCG district offices access to a comprehensive database of vessels with expired and active certificates. This system will play a pivotal role in preventing vessels with expired statutory and safety certificates from setting sail.

“The digitalization effort, slated for launch next year, will streamline certificate processes for shipping companies, ensuring a corruption-resistant environment by minimizing human intervention,” explained Administrator Malaluan. A nationwide orientation and user training are scheduled starting February, targeting stakeholders, including the PCG.

During the meeting, MARINA and PCG pledged to conduct regular dialogues, along with a nationwide reorientation for PCG personnel regarding MARINA policies, rules, regulations and standards.

Meanwhile, Administrator Malaluan outlined her three priorities for 2024: digitalization, safety of operations, and marine environment protection, all of which received full support from the PCG.

This visit aligns with MARINA’s broader agenda to establish stronger ties with government agencies, to ensure effective regulation and enforcement of maritime safety rules and regulations. The collaborative efforts between MARINA and PCG aim to create a safer and more efficient maritime transportation system in the country.

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