Seatrade Maritime is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Stalled Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers - inclusion of maritime education opposed

Image: PAMI Philippine Association of Maritime Institutions campaigns against inclusion of training in Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers
While legislators work to get the Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers back on track the country’s maritime academies continue to oppose the inclusion of education.

The Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers was due to be signed into law by Philippines President Ferdinand Marco Jr on 26 February but the bill was pulled back over jurisdictional issues between the Philippines Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to the International Labour Organization (ILO).

One of the functions of the Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers is to serve as enabling law for the Maritime Labour Convention (2006) under the ILO.

“This law ensures that the provisions outlined in the MLC  2006 are mirrored in our national laws. By doing so, it showcases our commitment to adhering to IMO regulations and underscores our readiness to actively engage as a cooperative partner in the global maritime 
industry,” Sabino Czar C. Manglicmot II, President of the Philippine Association of Maritime Institutions (PAMI) told Seatrade Maritime News.

However, as the name of the bill implies it also covers wide range of areas including maritime education in the law, which is a bone of contention with PAMI.

The association says it totally opposes the inclusion of maritime education in the Magna Carta and believes it will “kill the maritime education sector” in its current form.

“While we educate our students to become future seafarers they cannot be considered 
seafarers yet, hence they should not be considered in the proposed bill,” he said.

Under the proposed Magna Carta of Filipino Seafarers maritime academies would have to make heavy investments in simulators, training ships, and other technologies, and it would also place a cap on the number of students that can be enrolled.

PAMI says the only way for maritime academies to survive would be to raise fees which they say would put maritime education out of reach of ordinary Filipinos who make up 90% of the enrollment profile.

Around 30,000 students graduate from Philippines maritime academies every year, however, only around 20% are reported to ever serve onboard ship, raising concerns about the training provided and the lack of provision of sea time.

Manglicmot believes the inclusion of multiple subjects in a single law raises the danger of muddling its intent and focus. He believes that a more effective approach would be to enhance existing laws or by crafting a dedicated law specifically focused on education and training.