|Vice-President Jejomar Binay|
The European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) has assured Vice President Jejomar Binay that the European Union has no plan to blacklist Filipino seafarers.
Binay, presidential adviser on overseas Filipino workers’ concerns, has said the assurance came from ECCP vice president for external affairs Henry Schumacher.
Schumacher told Binay that Filipino seafarers will continue working in EU-flagged vessels.
“I am relieved to hear such reassurance that 80,000 of our seafarers in Europe are safe from the blacklist,” Binay said.
He said he was alarmed by news reports that the EU is poised to ban Filipino seafarers because of the Philippines’ failure to comply with the 1978 International Convention on the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) for Seafarers.
The STCW Convention sets qualification standards for officers and personnel on seagoing merchant ships.
The Philippines failed to meet EU standards on maritime education, training and competency certificates, according to the results of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) audit conducted in April.
Last month, Binay visited Hamburg, Germany upon invitation of Lloyd Shipping.
He assured EU shipowners employing Filipino seafarers of the Philippine government’s commitment to fully adhere to the STCW requirements.
EMSA is scheduled to conduct a follow-up inspection of Philippine maritime schools in October and no recommendation or decision will be made until the result of the audit is known.