The European Union (EU) has no plans to blacklist Filipino seafarers, Vice President Jejomar Binay said on Monday.
Binay said he was assured by European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) Vice President for External Affairs Henry Schumacher 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,” said Binay, who serves as Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers Concerns.
The Vice President was alarmed by reports that the EU will ban Filipino seafarers because the Philippines has not complied with the 1978 International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW).
The STCW Convention sets qualification standards for officers and personnel on merchant ships.
An audit of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) in April found that the Philippines failed to meet EU standards on maritime education, training and competency certificates.
In June, Binay visited Hamburg, Germany, upon invitation by Lloyd Shipping and assured EU shipowners employing Filipinos the Philippine government is committed to fully adhere to the STCW requirements.
RITCHIE A. HORARIO