Marina prioritizes ‘sure’ seafarers

Maritime Industry Authority

The Maritime Industry Authority on Sunday announced that it is prioritizing those seafarers that are already set for leaving and urged first-time seafarers not to cram in getting Seaman’s Record Book, also known as Seaman’s Book, if they don’t have yet sure flights.

In an interview, Lui de los Santos, director of Planning and Policy Service- Public Affairs and Digital Media Office, also dispelled anew rumors proliferating on Facebook that there is a scarcity of Seaman’s Book, making seafarers have a hard time booking schedules online.

De los Santos clarified that what actually has a “shortage” now is the Seafarers Identity Document or SID, a document that goes along with the Seaman’s Book for first-timers.

“Priority for the issuance of SID cards is given to seafarers who are joining their ships. Marina assures that our seafarers due for deployment are issued the SRB and SID cards. Hence, there is a need to control our issuances, now,” De los Santos said.

He explained that the delivery of the microchip from Europe used in the SID now takes 14 months from the usual 6-8 months due to the ongoing tension in Ukraine, that’s why releasing them to seafarers is challenging now.

“There is an expected delivery of SID cards by December and Marina expects to increase the level of its SID issuance once SID supplies arrive in the country. Delay in the delivery is attributed to the global scarcity of chips because of the health pandemic and the current security situation in Eastern Europe,” De los Santos said.

The SID, complementing the existing “SRB,” is a maritime security document developed by the International Labor Organization as a response to the increased need for security at seaports because of the series of terrorist attacks that ensued following the 9/11 incident in the United States of America that rippled across the globe.

The Marina Central Office and all its Regional Offices nationwide issue SID cards which can be applied online.

To recall, a video post on Facebook circulating online showed that a seafarer lamented that he was not able to book an appointment online in Marina satellite offices, Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange, SM Malls, even in Central Office in Port Area, Manila and other regions including Visayas where he is situated.

He said the slot is only available in the Marina Zamboanga satellite office.

“Help us because how can we apply for our jobs in agencies if we don’t have Seaman’s Book? SIDs are not needed documents for other international ports based on my experience. I wish we can acquire seaman’s book separately, especially those first timers,” according to the seafarer, who failed to identify his name and rank.

Answering this, De los Santos reiterated that there is no shortage of SRB, saying that “Manning Agencies were even provided with an expedite processing link for the urgent processing of the SRBs and SID cards of their seafarers as both documents have to be issued together.”

He also stressed that for those holding valid Seafarer Identification and Record Books or SIRB, there is no need to secure SIDs. SIRB serves both as a Record Book and Identity Document.

The Marina maintains a direct Viber group with Manning Agencies for SRB and SID concerns where they can touch base right away with the Marina.

Read more Daily Tribune stories at:

Follow us on social media
Facebook: @tribunephl
Youtube: TribuneNow
Twitter: @tribunephl
Instagram: @tribunephl
TikTok: @dailytribuneofficial