Philippines to amend seafarers' training procedures

14:12, June 25, 2010      

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The Philippines has made some changes in the training and certifying procedures of its seafarers to make them more competitive in the global arena, a conference was told in Manila Friday.

The amendments, dubbed "The Manila amendments to the STCW Convention and Code," will be implemented on Jan. 1, 2012 or two years from now and is the result of the five-day international seafarers' conference in Manila that ended on Friday.

STCW Convention and Code stands for International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers.

Among the plan is to improve measures that will prevent fraudulent practices associated with certificates of competency and strengthen the evaluation process. The amendment also calls for revising the required hours of work and rest; and coming up with new requirements for the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse, as well as updated standards relating to medical fitness standards for seafarers.

Other planned improvements include seafarers' training in modern technology such as electronic charts and information system; and updating of competence requirements for personnel serving on board all types of tankers, including new requirements for personnel serving on liquefied gas tankers.

"The amendments to the STCW Convention and Code will ensure that the necessary global standards will be in place to train and certify seafarers to operate technologically advanced ships for some time to come," International Maritime Organization Secretary- General Efthimios E. Mitropoulos said.

"The immediate task at hand is to promulgate the standards of maritime excellence we have just come to adopt amongst those working at the sharp end of the industry and to promote their proper implementation and enforcement through the usual means of enacting legislation and introducing enabling measures in maritime administrations and training establishments," Mitropoulos said.

More than 500 delegates from 85 IMO-member states attended the conference.

Source: Xinhua


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