The European Commission has made the decision to continue recognising certificates for seafarers issued by the Philippines, one of the world’s largest maritime labour supply countries.
In December 2021, following a detailed assessment of the training and certification system in place, the Commission had informed the Philippines that recognition of their seafarer certificates would be withdrawn unless serious measures were taken, including the compliance with the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for seafarers (STCW). Since then, the Philippines has made serious efforts to comply with the requirements, in particular in key areas like the monitoring, supervision and evaluation of training and assessment.
Commissioner for Transport Adina Vălean said: “We appreciate the constructive cooperation with the Philippine authorities and welcome their efforts to improve the system for training and certifying seafarers. The Philippines provide a significant and valued part of the European and global shipping industry’s maritime workforce – indeed, with roughly 50 000 Filipino masters and officers currently working on EU-flagged ships. The Philippines can count on our technical support to further improve the implementation and oversight of minimum education, training and certification requirements, as well as living and working conditions.”
In the coming months, the Commission intends to provide the Philippines with technical assistance to further improve its education, training and certification system for seafarers, as was also discussed between President Ursula von der Leyen and President of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos, in the margins of the EU-ASEAN summit last December.