On the first year anniversary of the MLC, 2006’s entry into force
DOLE-NCR issues certificates of compliance to 40 Philippine-Registered Vessels
Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis Baldoz yesterday announced that 40 more domestic vessels registered in the Philippines and owned by 15 Philippine domestic shipping companies have been issued certificates of compliance by the DOLE-National Capital Region under the new Labor Laws Compliance System (LLCS).
“This is the first time in the history of Philippine labor that the DOLE covers domestic ships. The LLCS now applies to companies and workers in domestic shipping and, thus, I encourage companies of Philippine-registered ships plying domestic waters to voluntarily comply with all labor laws. It is good economics, and it is good business to voluntarily comply with our labor laws that provides for the welfare and protection to Filipino seafarers,” said Baldoz.
Based on a list of the MARINA, there are 8,451 domestic vessels with Philippine registry as of 2012, of which 6,785 have gross tonnage below 200 GRT; 883 with gross tonnage of between 200-499 GRT; and 783 vessels with GRT of 500 and above. For 2014, the DOLE targets the 783 vessels with GRT of 500 and above for joint assessment under the LLCS.
Citing a report of DOLE-NCR Alex Avila, Baldoz said the 40 domestic vessels were awarded CoC at the program celebrating the first year anniversary of the entry into force of the Maritime Labor Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006).
“Ensuring compliance with all labor laws, including with safety and health standards, are pursuant to our obligations under the Maritime Labor Convention, 2006, and national issuances, such as D.O. No. 129, or the “Rules and Regulations Governing the Employment and Working Conditions of Seafarers Onboard Ships Engaged in Domestic Shipping, and the new LLCS,” said Baldoz in her message beamed from Claver, Surigao del Norte, via the social app, Facetime, to the audience in the program at the AMOSUP in Intramuros, Manila.
Director Avila, in his report, identified the 15 shipping companies issued the CoC for 40 ships as follows: (1) Buenos Aires Lighterage, Inc. (with one vessel); (2) Christie Transport, Inc. (one vessel); (3) F.I.C. Marketing Co., Inc. (four vessels); (4) Herma Shipping And Transport Corp. (eight vessels); (5) International Tankers Corp. (one vessel); (6) Islands Integrated Offshore Services, Inc. (six vessels); (7) Loadstar Shipping Co., Inc. (two vessels); (8) Moreta Shipping Lines Inc. (two vessels); (9) Ocean Bees Inc. (four vessels); (10) Petrotrade Phils., Inc. (four vessels); (11) Recto Cifra Agro-Industrial Inc. (one vessel); (12) Resins Incorporated (one vessel); (13) Sealoader Shipping Corporation (two vessels); (14) Siment Transport, Inc. (one vessel); and (15) Swordfish Marine Services Corporation (two vessels).
Two domestic shipping companies, the Therma Mobile, Inc., with four vessels; and Phil. Ecology Systems Corp., with two vessels, or a total of six vessels, have also been issued CoC for their ships but they were not present during the awarding.
Avila said he will award the CoC at the DOLE-NCR office in an appropriate ceremony next week.
Of the 40 vessels issued their respective CoC, only two are registered in the Port of Cebu. The rest are registered in the Port of Manila, Avila declared.
The CoC were issued to the vessels after the conduct of a joint assessment, one of the mechanisms that the DOLE uses under the LLCS. During the process, management and worker representatives sit down with the DOLE to assess compliance, with the latter informing the former about the various labor laws, including the safety and health standard regulations, that the shipping company ought to comply.
If deficiencies or gaps in compliance are discovered during the assessment, a plan of action is formulated to correct the gaps or deficiencies. The DOLE teaches the company and the workers on how to comply. After the gaps or deficiencies are effected, the DOLE issues a CoC to the company.
Baldoz has emphasized the seriousness of the DOLE in accelerating implementation of the new LLCS by going around the country’s regions observing the joint assessment of establishments conducted by the DOLE regional offices.
“Voluntary compliance fosters harmonious workplace relations and is generally good for business. It leads to productivity and profitability,” the labor and employment chief stressed.
“The DOLE is here to help you comply. All our technical assistance services are free. You should not anymore fear the DOLE because our new labor law compliance system is designed as a mix of developmental and regulatory approaches that encourages voluntary compliance,” Baldoz said.