The month of November was highlighted by continued inter-agency meetings as well as international cooperation in line with addressing maritime issues, among others. This report is presented according to the major thrusts of the National Coast Watch System (NCWS), namely: (A) Policy Formulation and Coordination; (B) Developing Capabilities and Capacities; (C) International Cooperation; and, (D) Strategic Communications.
POLICY FORMULATION AND COORDINATION
Draft MOU between PH and China re Marine Environmental Protection. The NCWC Secretariat participated during the discussion, critique and redrafting of the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Marine Environmental Protection between the Philippines’ Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and China’s State Oceanic Administration (SOA). The discussion was led by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) together with other concerned government agencies. The draft MOU proposes a partnership between the DENR and SOA in the areas of joint marine environmental protection activities, exchange of expertise and technology transfer and other forms of cooperation relating to marine environment conservation and protection.
DEVELOPING CAPABILITIES AND CAPACITIES
Inter-agency Meetings. The NCWC Secretariat organized an inter-agency meeting with Philippine Navy regarding issues on the Punta Bilar Site in Surigao del Norte in preparation for the supposed Transfer of Properties from US. The meeting particularly focused on the signing of TOP forms as well the verification of maritime surveillance equipment that shall be turned over. Meanwhile, the Secretariat also participated in the 5th Science meeting organized by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) at the Watergate Hotel, Butuan City. The meeting discussed on updates regarding DIWATA 1 and DIWATA 2 satellites.
Global Maritime Forum 2017. The Secretariat participated in the Global Maritime Forum (GMF) Workshop on 13-14 November 2017 in Vallejo, California, USA. The forum, with its theme “The Evolution of Big Data, Opportunities for Maritime Domain: The Importance of Public-Private-Academic Partnerships”, included series of workshops that aim to manage maritime information to ensure safety of global maritime activities. Read more
ASEAN – India Workshop on Blue Economy. Together with the DFA, the Secretariat was part of the Official Philippine Delegation to the “ASEAN – India Workshop on the Blue Economy: From Concepts to Action” held on November 24-25, 2017 in Nha Trang, Vietnam. There was no representation coming from Singapore and Brunei but all other ASEAN member countries actively participated in the discussion on best practices relating to the blue economy. The workshop also addressed the following: (1) integration of the concept of blue economy into the national and regional development strategies of ASEAN countries, and; (2) prioritization of the blue economy as an area of regional cooperation between ASEAN countries and its dialogue partners.
STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS AND CONCERNS
UNCLOS Training Workshop in La Union. On 22-23 November 2017, the NCWC Secretariat, in partnership with the University of the Philippines – Institute for Maritime Affairs and Law of the Sea (UP-IMLOS), piloted the first of its Training Course on United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) at the Naval Forces Northern Luzon (NAVFORNOL), Naval Station Ernesto Ogbinar, Poro Point, San Fernando City, La Union. The training was conducted among Philippine Navy Officers coming from the Headquarters, NAVFORNOL and PN Vessels Station. Read more