Personnel of the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) participated as role players in the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) Workshop on Best Practices in Implementing Safety of Navigation Instruments held on 11–12 July 2017 at the Conrad Manila Hotel, Pasay City.
Senior Foreign Affairs Research Specialist Ms. Fides A. Quintos of the FSI Center for International Relations and Strategic Studies (CIRSS) joined the panel of speakers for Session Two on “Means of Cooperation to Enhance Safety of Navigation in Critical Waterways.” She delivered a presentation on the Djibouti Code of Conduct, which demonstrates a best practice on regional cooperation to address piracy and armed robbery against ships in the western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden.
FSI Deputy Director-General Julio S. Amador III also served as the discussant for Session One on “Enhancing Navigational Safety for International Commercial Shipping,” while CIRSS Head Ms. Rowena G. Layador acted as the discussant for Session Four on “Enhancing Navigational Safety for Non-Convention and Fishery Vessels.”
Aside from those sessions, the two-day workshop also tackled the themes of “Promoting Safety of Navigation among Military and Government Vessels” in Session Three and “International Cooperation on Information-Sharing to Enhance Safety of Navigation” in Session Five. The speakers came from the national maritime agencies of various ARF member-states, including India, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and the United States; intergovernmental bodies, including the European Union (EU), the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) Information Sharing Center, and the International Police Organization (INTERPOL). Academic institutions and the commercial shipping industry also participated in the workshop.
The ARF Workshop was co-chaired by the Philippines and India. It aimed to gather and facilitate the exchange of best practices among ARF member-states on the implementation of the Convention on the Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS), the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREGs), and other international arrangements on safety of navigation; review the implementation of these instruments in the Asia-Pacific setting; and make concrete recommendations on capacity-building towards the enhancement of a rules-based maritime regime in the Asia-Pacific.