With the objective of consolidating the Republic of Panama as an international center of maritime services, the Panama Maritime Authority (AMP) received from the Inter-American School of Social Dialogue, Tripartism and Conflict Resolution of the University of Panama (E-DISTREC ) the final reports of the consultations carried out jointly with the social partners, the maritime sector, the main maritime unions, maritime universities, as well as State institutions with the aim of modernizing Decree Law 8 of February 26, 1998 (by which work at sea and waterways is regulated and other provisions are issued) and Law 57 of August 6, 2008 (General Merchant Marine).

To achieve this mission, 2 work groups were established to review and analyze the existing regulations, seeking to adapt them and incorporate new articles. This innovative and pioneering method in government management had the distinguished facilitators of E-DISTREC from the University of Panama (UP), which is made up of highly experienced personnel in conflict resolution and social dialogue.
Regarding the rules we have:
1- Tripartite Board of the Sea (METRIMAR): Draft Modification of Decree Law 8 of February 26, 1998, which regulates work at sea and waterways and dictates other provisions.

This legislation has been in force for more than 22 years, which is why a new standard was required, updated, in accordance with the advances that have been generated in the maritime labor sector in order to guarantee the rights of seafarers and fishermen, who work on board Panamanian-flagged vessels.

During the year 2020, the legal and technical team of the General Directorate of Seafarers (DGGM) meticulously carried out the lifting of the draft made up of 288 articles that were presented for its tripartite consultation that began on May 13, 2021, when the table was established and ended on April 3, 2023, during which time 105 meetings were held to review the proposed document, which concluded with 191 articles, broken down into 186 agreed, 10 partially approved and 6 in dissent. The document is expected to be submitted for approval at the next meeting of the AMP Board of Directors.

In the METRIMAR meetings, an environment of transparency, respect and collaboration prevailed among the members, made up of the social interlocutors (workers and employers) duly accredited in the Republic of Panama, in compliance with the principles of tripartite consultation established by the International Organization of Labor (ILO), such as:

• Government Sector, represented by the AMP, the Ministry of Labor and Work Development (MITRADEL) and the Aquatic Resources Authority of Panama (ARAP).
• Employer sector, represented by the National Council of Private Enterprise (CONEP) through the Panama Maritime Chamber (CMP) and the Panama National Chamber of Fisheries and Aquaculture (CNPA).

• Worker sector, represented by the National Council of Organized Workers (CONATO) and the National Confederation of Independent Union Unity (CONUSI).
• Also present as observers were the Panamanian Association of Naval Officers (APOM) and the National College of Seafarers (CONAGEMAR).

The primary foundation of this Bill is to establish the regulatory framework for work on board internal service merchant vessels in the Republic of Panama, as well as the regulatory framework for work on board Panamanian-flagged commercial fishing vessels of internal and international service, to ensure decent working and living conditions for all workers serving on these two categories of vessels.

1- Merchant Marine Dialogue Table (MEDIMM): for the reform of Law 57 of 2008 General Merchant Marine,

It is important to highlight that this update and review began in 2020, by the General Directorate of Merchant Marine (DGMM), and then on August 17, 2022, the draft was presented to the main maritime unions and other state institutions, who actively participated in the complete review until an updated regulation was obtained that provides answers to clients, that adjusts to the international market so that the Panama Ship Registry can compete on equal terms with other non-state registries that present innovative options to the shipowners.

Among the participants were: the Panamanian Association of Maritime Law (APADEMAR), National Bar Association (CNA), National Aeronaval Service (SENAN), Association of Panamanian Shipowners (ARPA), Recognized Organizations (IARO), Panama Maritime Chamber (CMP ), Authority of Aquatic Resources (ARAP), Ministry of Foreign Relations (MIRE), Public Registry of Panama (RPP) and Public Safety Council.

MEDIMM ended on May 10, 2023, leaving the document with a total of 188 articles, modifying 70, eliminating 10 and proposing more than 12 new articles, all approved by consensus by the working group. These modifications seek to improve the competitiveness of the Registry and keep us at the forefront in the maritime sector.

Through Resolution J.D. N° 034-2023 (Thursday, June 29, 2023) published in the Official Gazette on August 3, 2023, the administrator of the Panama Maritime Authority is authorized to present the draft bill to the Cabinet Council «by which Law 57 of August 6, 2008, General of Merchant Marine, is modified», to be subsequently sent to the National Assembly of Panama.

The modernization of the legislation of the Panamanian maritime sector, will bring with it a boost in the generation of jobs, will promote investment in a modern and flexible regulatory framework, applied to the advances and modernization and improvement in the quality of the services provided for the benefit of the maritime sector, the result of this effort is the updating of the laws, which have been consulted and designed to be an effective tool that favors the maritime sector in Panama.

Dejar respuesta

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here