PAMTCI chief tells Pinoy seafarers to maximize their MLCs

March 4, 2012 12:57 pm 

MANILA, March 3 – In order to cement the country’s reputation as the world’s number one provider of quality seafarers, Philippine Association of Maritime Training Centers, Inc. (PAMTCI) president Chief Engineer Fred Haboc urged Filipino seamen to take their management level courses (MLCs) as soon as possible so that they can progress further in the chosen careers.

As this develops, Haboc also denied reports that the group is getting swamped by Filipino sailors looking to complete their MLCs requirements and causing the delay in the deployment of Filipino seafarers abroad.

“Actually there are sufficient training centers offering MLCs subjects in the country. What the problem is that the manning companies are not giving our seafarers proper advice on when it is the proper time to take their MLCs,” the PAMTCI chief emphasized.

He also reminded manning companies and seagoing employers to remind their sailor employees to take the qualification test as soon as their seagoing service hits the six-month mark.

“And this is according to the Professional Regulation Commission. Seafarers can take their MLCs in one sitting or in several sittings depending on his schedule,” Haboc related.

The PAMTCI chief added that all of this doable with the proper planning, advice, and coordination between the manning agencies and their seagoing employees.

He also pointed out training centers are capable of handling the demand should the demand for the MLCs peaked as they have capability and flexibility to conduct as many review classes as needed.

“We can do two training sessions a day as we are mandated by law to provide 10 hours of instruction and training to prospective MLCs takers. This is four hours higher considering that European practice is only limited to six hours.

Haboc also urged manning companies to craft a program wherein all of their qualified seafarer employees, who are scheduled for vacations and desirous to climb up in the seagoing ladder, an opportunity to undertake their MLC training requirement.

“Such things should be done immediately as manning companies are also responsible for the development and advancement of their employees. There is also such a thing called competency management,” the PAMTCI chief emphasized.

Haboc added that manning companies should also implement a training analysis program for the sole purpose is to determine the knowledge gap of their employees and formulate measures that would remedy the problem at the soonest possible time.

He also denied allegation that friction is threatening to disrupt the working relations of PAMTCI and the manning sector, regarding the MLC issue, adding that both groups are coordinating fully to solve the problem.

“Even if we don’t break even we always make it a point to offer MLCs training as we know fully well how important it is to the continued deployment of our seafarers,” Haboc emphasized.

As this develops, the PAMTCI chief said that they are urging the government to immediately come out with the implementing rules and regulations on the so-called 2010 Manila Amendments to the Standards of Trainings, Certification, and Watchkeeping so that training centers can come up with the proper training syllabus.

He added that the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) will be back this March 7 to 14 to determine whether the country’s maritime training schools and centers have corrected their deficiencies.

Haboc also hoped that the above-mentioned centers and institutions have already done their homework so that EMSA team will go home bringing positive reports about the state of Philippine maritime training and education.

A 2006 inspection by EMSA found Philippine monitoring of training and educational programs lacking.

"The deficiencies that the EMSA inspectors noted were those relating to maritime administration, monitoring of maritime education and training institutions, requirements for seafarers' certification, management level course, and other findings relating to METIs," the Department of Labor and Employment earlier said.

It said, however, that corrections "directed towards ensuring the continued improvement in the quality of education and training and competencies of our seafarers" were underway. (PNA)



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