The MARINA lawyers group convened to set in place a congressional agenda regarding concerns on the Philippine ship registry. Presiding over the group, Atty. Gloria Victoria-Bañas tasked all lawyers to actively participate in the said undertaking so as to provide strength and support to a drafted bill on the Maritime Code. Atty. Victoria-Bañas also stressed the need to focus on promoting the flag and to present a more attractive registry to diffuse the alarming rate of ships flagging out.
The MARINA, in undertaking measures to address the declining rate of ship registry, has recently amended MARINA Memorandum Circular No. 182 or the “Rules in the Acquisition of Ships under Presidential Decree 760, as amended, and providing herewith the Implementing Rules under Chapter XV of the 1997 Philippine Merchant Marine Rules and Regulations (PMMRR) on Registration, Documentation, Licensing of Ships for International Voyages” by providing simplified requirements and rules rationalized for ships registered under the Philippine flag.
According to the latest data of MARINA, the Philippine Ship Registry continuously declines. Since 1988, the Philippine ship registry has dropped to present level of 25% to 117 of what used to be 467.
Theory and practice expert and resource speaker Professor Proshanto K. Mukherjee was invited last February to a Seminar and Workshop on International Ship Registries to discuss the different kinds of ship registration system and the legal and practical implications of each.
Taking breadth from said seminar and workshop, the lawyers group take the lead in reviewing maritime laws and ship registries. The Overseas Shipping Service, meanwhile, will act as support group. This initial MARINA all-lawyers meet took place on March 22 at the MARINA Boardroom.