BUSINESS CHAMBERS representing European countries with major shipping industries said they welcomed a European Commission (EC) decision to continue recognizing the qualifications of Filipino seafarers. 

“The Joint Maritime Committee of the Dutch-, German-, Nordic- and Norwegian Chambers of Commerce welcomes the decision of the European Commission to continue the recognition of Filipino seafarers’ certificates, which will ensure stability of employment for Filipino seafarers,” the committee said in a statement on Thursday.  

Tore Henriksen, Joint Maritime Committee chairman, said the decision is a “very positive development” for the Philippine maritime industry.  

“It is commendable that the Philippine authorities have taken necessary steps towards complying with the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), and have demonstrated their commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of Filipino seafarers who contribute significantly to the global shipping industry,” Mr. Henriksen said.

On March 31, the European Commission said it would continue to recognize the certificates of Filipino seafarers, after having warned the Philippines that recognition would be withdrawn if certain standards remained unmet.

 The Joint Maritime Committee consists of the Dutch, German, and Nordic Chambers of Commerce in the Philippines as well as the Philippines-Norway Business Council. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave