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Denmark reaffirms support for PH efforts on intl maritime compliance

Denmark reaffirms support for PH efforts on intl maritime compliance
Yashika F. Torib December 28, 2022

THE Danish government has reaffirmed its support for the Philippine maritime industry's efforts to comply with international maritime standards as set by the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) Convention.

In a Facebook post, Danish Ambassador Franz-Michael Mellbin said Denmark is happy with Filipino maritime professionals.

He also hailed President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s assurance that the Philippines will address the noncompliance issues identified by the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) audit.

He said that failure to comply would be a great loss to the maritime industry and the Philippines.

With Danish shipping companies being one of the major employers of more than 10,000 Filipino seafarers, President Marcos' assurance on the Philippine government's intention to resolve the certification issue during his recent trip to Belgium is a very welcome development, Ambassador Mellbin said.

The Danish Maritime Authority paid courtesy visits on Philippine maritime authorities last month to explore further strengthening maritime cooperation including the protection of seafarers' rights.

Earlier this year, EMSA flagged the Philippines for deficiencies in local seafarer education, training and certification.

In his recent official visit to Brussels, Belgium, President Marcos reiterated that his administration will do everything to address these deficiencies to prevent job losses among Filipino seafarers deployed to work for European Union vessels.

"It's not something you can debate about. You comply. We'll have to comply. So that we will be accredited... it's not discretionary," he said in an interview in Brussels.

The President has also ordered the creation of the International Advisory Council on Global Maritime Affairs to address deficiencies identified by the EU concerning Filipino seafarers.

Marcos issued the directive during a meeting with International Maritime Employers' Council CEO Francisco Gargiulo, the International Chamber of Shipping, the International Labor Organization and EMSA and several business executives and leaders of European shipping companies and shipowners associations in Brussels last December 13.