Signed by President Rodrigo Duterte on 21 September, the EO 63 foresees that the MARINA should establish systems and mechanisms 'for the promotion and protection of the well-being of the seafarers thereby ensuring their professionalism and competitiveness, both in local and international trade.'
Under EO 63, the MARINA, in coordination with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), shall also take the lead in the evaluation and approval of maritime education programs, which would require compliance with the STCW Convention. In addition, MARINA and CHED shall evaluate and inspect all maritime higher education institutions in the country.
Further, the MARINA, in consultation with the Department of Health, shall establish the standards for medical fitness and the procedures for the issuance of medical certificates to Filipino seafarers.
Finally, the EO also tasks the MARINA and the Philippine Coast Guard to ensure that even seafarers onboard ships in Philippines ports 'are certificated in accordance with STCW Convention.'
The Philippines, as one of the primary source of seamen in the global shipping market, is party to the STCW Convention, which provides the internationally agreed and accepted standards governing seafarers.