Home » Maritime » Agreement to international ruling seen easing PH ship registration

The Philippine Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) is optimistic the country’s recent accession to the Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) of 2006 will ease ship registration processes leading to more vessels flying the Philippine-flag.

The Convention will take effect next year after the Philippines deposited its instrument of accession early last month.

Upon implementation, MLC 2006 will replace 37 International Labor Organization maritime conventions and related recommendations adopted since 1920. MLC will oversee certification and facilitate inspections of ships and permit port state control that will allow for inspections to be carried out by other countries.

Marina overseas shipping office chief Arsenio Lingad II said MLC opens the country’s shipping registry to checking and verification by other countries thereby easing the process of inspection and other overseas procedures.

To date, there are about 150 vessels flying the Philippine flag, mostly general-cargo vessels and predominantly under the bareboat chartering program of Marina. The number is 12% lower than the 170 vessels registered before the start of the global financial crisis some four years ago.

“Some had to de-list and do cash cropping for foreign sponsors,” Lingad said about the decline in registration. “However while some were de-listing, there were also newcomers in the industry but no significant number of additional vessels; most were replacement vessels only.”

He said he expects the MLC to “correct this trend and increase the number of vessels flying the Philippine flag” but not jack up the country’s owned tonnage. Most vessels will still come in via bareboat chartering, he added.

Aside from the Philippines, the following countries have ratified MLC 2006: Liberia, Marshall Islands, Bahamas, Panama, Norway, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Spain, Croatia, Bulgaria , Canada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Switzerland, Benin, Singapore, Denmark, Antigua and Barbuda, Latvia, Luxembourg, Kiribati, Netherlands, Australia, St Kitts and Nevis, Tuvalu , Togo, Poland, Palau, Sweden, Cyprus, Russian Federation.

Large Ship On Sea by worradmu
Free image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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