Monday, February 8, 2016
Japanese Shipbuilder Begins Assembly Of PCG Vessels
Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Secretary Jun Abaya led a Philippine delegation in the Keel Laying and Safety Prayer Ceremony for the first of ten (10) new multi-role response vessels (MRRVs) for the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) held in this city last February 6.
“It is high-time that the PCG acquires these much-needed MRRVs to support the men and women of the organization in fulfilling their sworn duties,” remarked Abaya in his speech at the event.
“Through this meaningful ceremony, we appreciate the start of construction of the first vessel, and also highlight the full implementation of the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project (MSCIP) after many years of hard work and close cooperation with Japan,” he added.
The first vessel will arrive in the Philippines in September 2016. Succeeding vessels will be delivered quarterly beginning December 2016, until the final MRRV arrives in August 2018.
The 40-meter MRRVs are part of the MSCIP, which aims to strengthen the coastal patrol capabilities of the PCG to respond more effectively to conduct maritime law enforcement activities within the Philippine maritime jurisdiction.
Keel Laying is the first milestone in vessel construction, which marks the time that steel cutting works are substantially completed and elements are ready for assembly. The Anzen-kigan-sai, a traditional Japanese Shinto ceremony, was held to pray for the safe construction of the MRRVs, followed by the ceremonial welding of the vessel.
Abaya also spoke of sustaining the country’s partnership with Japan in strengthening maritime capabilities, saying that “[t]his capacity-building project demonstrates the goodwill, long-standing friendship, and mutual cooperation with Japan. It is our wish that we will continue to work towards more strategic partnerships, allowing our nations to achieve our respective and shared goals.”