Press Release
August 2, 2015

Drilon seeks to modernize naval architecture profession

In a bid to strengthen and boost the competitiveness of the Filipino workforce, Senate President Franklin M. Drilon today pushed for the early passage of a proposed measure that seeks to modernize the practice of Naval Architecture in the country.

Senate Bill No. 2482, authored by Drilon, seeks to modernize the practice of naval architecture and marine engineering by updating and incorporating innovations to the existing law in line with the latest international practices and standards. The measure was sponsored on the floor by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV last Tuesday.

"Given the advances in the technology and developments in the profession, the law, which has been in existence for 50 years, is no longer responsive to the needs of the Filipino professionals," Drilon said.

The Senate leader said it is important that this area of profession be updated to modern standards given that the country's ship building and repair industry is starting to be recognized by other countries.

"Our position of influence in the global maritime industry has started to encompass the shipbuilding sector. In 2012, the Philippines ranked 5th largest shipbuilding country following China, Japan, South Korea and Brazil," said Drilon.

"The economic upswing in this sector rests on the appeal of our naval architects, who are highly valued for their proven competence and remarkable diligence," he said. He noted that nearly one-third of the world's 1.5 million seafarers are Filipinos which helped fuel the economy with US$ 5.2 billion in remittance in 2013.

"We need to ensure the global competitiveness of our shipbuilders and secure our position as a leading global maritime nation. We can only do this if we harness the skills of our naval architects by providing them continuing professional development and training," he emphasized.

He said that Filipino naval architects and maritime professionals will be more in demand with the upcoming ASEAN economic integration, because of the expected rise in cargo and shipping activities.

Drilon said the bill also aims to revise the definition of Naval Architecture, update the scope of the professional practice, strengthen the Professional Regulatory Board of Naval Architecture, and outline the procedure and requirements for licensure examination and registration, and impose heavier penalties for the practice of such profession without a valid certificate of registration and professional identification card.

Its counterpart bill in the House of Representatives was authored by Angkla Partylist Rep. Jess Manalo.

Back in 2014, when more than 80,000 Filipino seafarers faced the threat of losing their jobs in EU-flagged vessels because of the country's failure to comply with the international convention on seafarers, Drilon and Manalo were instrumental in the passage of the Marina Law which introduced major structural changes to the maritime regulatory system and thus, helped avert such threat.

News Latest News Feed