Speech by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. at the Philippine Maritime Industry Summit 2023

Event Philippine Maritime Industry Summit 2023
Location The Tent, The Manila Hotel in Manila

Thank you very much, Transport Secretary Jimmy Bautista.

I also like to acknowledge House Speaker, Speaker of the House Martin Romualdez; Excellencies of the Diplomatic Corps; Labor and Employment Secretary Benny Laguesma; the MARINA Administrator Atty. Hernani Fabia; fellow workers in government; partners in the private sector; other distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.

I am honored to join our industry experts, various government institutions, and key stakeholders as we conduct this year’s Philippine Maritime Industry Summit and present the Maritime Industry Development Plan or MIDP for 2028.

I recognize the Department of Transportation and the Maritime Industry Authority for spearheading this important and timely event and for taking a huge leap forward in making the country’s maritime industry even more globally competitive through the MIDP 2028.

Through this development plan—which was formulated by the MARINA and the DOTr, in coordination with relevant government agencies and key stakeholders—we will achieve our two core objectives: First, to ensure the development and expansion of the Philippine merchant fleet, and Second, to ensure the advancement of a future- ready maritime human capital.

Specifically, this plan covers eight priority programs ranging from enhancing maritime transport safety and security; promoting environmental sustainability; implementing digitalization; modernizing, upgrading, and expanding domestic and overseas shipping industries — including the local shipbuilding and ship repair industry; promoting a highly skilled and competitive maritime workforce; and adopting an effective and efficient maritime administration governance system.

In addition to this, the MIDP will establish a system that aims to lessen the detrimental impacts of both natural and man-made eventualities as well as to prepare for the future and its contingencies that may affect the sector.

It is my great pride to report to you that the Philippines is the world’s primary source of maritime manpower — constituting 25% of the global seafarers and bringing in a total of 6.71 billion dollars in remittances in 2022.

With that being said, I laud the commitment of our Filipino seafarers to bring honor and pride once again to our country. They do this by providing quality service across the globe and contributing to our nation-building efforts.

I extend my gratitude as well to the officials and members of our domestic and overseas shipping, shipbuilding, and ship repair sectors.

As of 31 December 2022, there are nearly 16,000 registered domestic ships plying the nearly 1,300 inter- island shipping routes across the country.

Similarly, there are almost a hundred Philippine- registered overseas ships that yielded 30.75 million pesos in tax collections in 2022.

With regard to the local shipbuilding and ship repair sector, as of 2021, there are 116 MARINA registered shipyards across the country.

Given that the Philippines is a maritime nation, I believe that it is time for us to make the maritime industry once again a top priority.

While we already hold a dominant position in the world of global shipping, I certainly believe that we can do more, especially here at home.

We already hold the most vital ingredient to success— which is our seafarers.  All we need to do now is to ensure that we harness their knowledge, make use of their experience, and mobilize our local industries to build an even stronger domestic maritime industry for the benefit of our people.

So, I encourage all government institutions and key stakeholders to collaborate, to cooperate to ensure the continued growth and development of this extremely important sector.

I also urge all concerned agencies to pursue a whole-of-government approach to effectively implement the MIDP 2028 as well as to continue communicating with member-states of the International Maritime Organization and the European Union-Committee on Safe Seas.

As the leader, I assure you that this administration will give its unqualified support in your aspirations of building a Philippine maritime industry that will be looked upon with admiration by the region and the rest of the world.

Together, let us synergize all our efforts and harness the potential of this event and of the MIDP 2028. This to provide better opportunities for our fellow Filipinos, to build a more progressive, sustainable, and resilient maritime sector.

Thank you. Mabuhay tayong lahat at magandang hapon po sa inyong lahat. [applause]


— END —


SOURCE: PCO-PND (Presidential News Desk)