Shipowners, government, unions, and manning agencies in Maritime Industry Tripartite Council vow closer coordination during maritime accidents--Baldoz

Date Posted: January 8th, 2015 01:21 AM

Shipowners, government, unions, and manning agencies in Maritime Industry Tripartite Council vow closer coordination during maritime accidents--Baldoz

Following the instruction of Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz, Philippine Overseas Employment Administration chief Hans Leo J. Cacdac yesterday said the Overseas Seafarers Committee of the Maritime Industry Tripartite Council had met and its members, which include representatives from government, seafarers’ unions, shipowners, and licensed manning agencies, were in agreement to coordinate more closely in times of maritime accidents, both in national and international waters.

“They have clearly delineated their responsibilities and were common in understanding that the paramount concern is to ensure the welfare of Filipino seafarers and their families, especially when maritime accidents happen,” said Baldoz after receiving Administrator Cacdac’s report on the outcome of the MITC meeting.

In his report, Cacdac said shipowners vowed to ensure the seaworthiness of their ships and to comply with flag and port States’ requirements on ships’ seaworthiness.

“They committed to communicate and inform their manning agencies the situation within 24 hours of a marine casualty incident; pay seafarers and their families whatever entitlements are due them, including medical treatments, accommodation, and other forms of assistance; and facilitate their repatriation,” Cacdac said.

He said that on the part of the manning agencies, they vowed to comply with the POEA’s reportorial requirements through the fastest means, such as e-mail or SMS (text).

“Manning agencies committed that no less than their top management shall communicate to the families of the seafarers and assure them of fast settlement of entitlements and benefits. They also promised to personally visit the families and explain to them the situation and provide them advice and counseling,” Cacdac said.

“They shall also facilitate the payment of all the benefits, including survivorship and provident pensions, unpaid earned wages, leave pay, compensation for loss of personal effects; repatriation costs; funeral and burial benefits, in case of death, alongside the payment of the compulsory insurance under R.A. 10022,” he explained.

Cacdac further reported that on the part of the POEA, it will coordinate the flow of accurate and truthful information to the families and provide assistance to facilitate the payment of Social Security System, Pag-IBIG, and OWWA benefits.

Furthermore, Cacdac said the DOLE will push its efforts in forging bilateral agreements with flag States which, like the Philippines, are signatories to the Maritime Labor Convention, 2006.

“As directed by Secretary Baldoz, our goal this year is to commence negotiation with flag States on the welfare and protection Filipino seafarers, which includes closer coordination in times of marine casualty incidents,” he said.

Baldoz had ordered the convening of the committee meeting, saying that with 300,000 Filipino seafarers deployed annually there is always the likelihood that a Filipino seafarer may be onboard when a ship is reported to be involved in an accident anywhere in the world.


Created Jan 26th 2015, 10:50


Quick Links