MANILA, SEPTEMBER 19, 2016—The Philippines is set for a busy but memorable week as the country is set to celebrate the National Maritime Week (NMW) from September 25-30, 2016.
The week is packed with simultaneous events nationwide ranging from sports fests, coastal clean-ups, capacity-building seminars, jobs fair, as well as singing and arts contests.
This year’s NMW theme is “Shipping: Indispensable to the World” was coined by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the maritime policy-making body of the United Nations.
PPA, meanwhile, is the lead agency in this year’s celebration. The last time PPA hosted the event was in 2013.
PPA General Manager Jay Daniel R. Santiago said this year’s celebration is different from the usual festivities held annually as the kick-off ceremony on September 25 will be a grand parade, a holy mass and wreath-laying to recognize the men and women of the sector as well as their contributions to the national economy. Usually, such events are held in the last day of the celebration.
“We promise a lively and interactive the National Maritime Week,” Santiago said.
“The present administration has a soft spot for the maritime industry and the marching order is to make this celebration as significant as possible to make a dent not only in the hearts of the men and women of the industry but to the entire Filipino people and the world,” Santiago added.
The event will also highlight a nationwide ports and harbors clean-up drive on September 27 to coincide with the International Coastal Clean-up Day to be joined by all participating government and private agencies has been scheduled.
“The NMW Committee also required all ship captains to dress up their respective ships while in the port starting September 25 up to the end of the week-long celebration,” Santiago stressed, adding that ships will also simultaneously blow their horns for two minutes starting 8AM on September 25.
The National Maritime Week is celebrated by virtue of Proclamation No. 1094, consolidating the celebration of the National Seafarers Day (NSD), National Maritime Day (NMD) and the National Maritime Week (NMW), making the celebration more significant and more inspiring.
The NSD is being celebrated through Presidential Proclamation 1094 series of 1997, which amended Presidential Proclamation No. 828 series of 1996, declaring the last Sunday of September of every year as National Seafarers’ Day (NSD). The purpose of the Proclamation is to give due recognition to the vital role of Filipino seafarers towards the development of the Philippines as a maritime country.
The International Maritime Organization, on the other hand, through Circular No. 1884 dated July 11, 1996, requested all member nations to celebrate the World Maritime Day during the last week of every September of each year.
In the Philippines, Presidential Proclamation No. 866 dated Sept. 6, 1996 declared Sept. 27, 1996 and the last Friday of September every year, as NMD.
Participating agencies, this year, are the Department of Tourism, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Transportation, Maritime Industry Authority, the PPA, the Philippine Coast Guard, National Commission for Culture and the Arts, Philippine Navy, Cebu Ports Authority, Apostleship of the Sea, Conference of Maritime Manning Agencies, Filipino Association for Mariner’s Employment, Inc., Luneta Seafarers Welfare Foundation, Inc., Masters and Mates Association of the Philippines, Philippine Association of Manning Agencies and Ship Managers, Inc., Philippine Association of Maritime Institute, Philippine Association of Maritime Training Center, Inc., Philippine Interisland Shipping Association, Lighterage Association of the Philippines, Philippine Liner Shipping Association, Inc., Asian Terminals, Inc., International Container Terminal Services, Inc., Manila North Harbour Port, Inc., Angkla Party list, Maritime Training Council, Marine Engineers Officers Association of the Philippines, Philippine Ship Agents Association, United Filipino Seafarers, the United Harbor Pilots’ Association of the Philippines, the Associated Marine Officers and Seamen’s Union of the Philippines and the Maritime Law Association of the Philippines, among others.