Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Seafarer Training Academy Courses Popular In the Land of Smiles

Phuket is Unsurprisingly Popular with Foreign Trainees
Shipping News Feature
THAILAND – Since the Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) first approved a Thailand based seafarer training facility in 2015, it would appear (somewhat unsurprisingly) the Land of Smiles has proved popular with both advanced seafarers and also entry level crew to complete STCW 2010 and the new updating International Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping courses. The uptake has been described as 'astonishing' by Anthony Gould, CEO and major investor in the Galileo Maritime Academy in Phuket.

Mr Gould, himself a lifelong seafarer and CEO of shipping and cargo operators, said that with more than 20 MCA approved courses being delivered each month the expectation was now for a similar growth in international students from the cruise ship and offshore oil & gas industries, partly due to the growth in cruise ship operations based in Asia and voyaging to a host of new Asian cruise destinations plus the burgeoning recovery of oil and gas offshore operations. He said after the recent launch of their Survival Craft and Fast Rescue Boats training facility in Phuket:

”Over the last three years international professional seafarers coming to Phuket, Thailand for advanced refresher and other MCA courses in approved marine engineering, efficient deckhand, medical care, disaster prevention and management, vessel stability, security and rescue training, has increased by more than 100% each year.

”My team at Galileo expected growth as our new IMO, MNTB and ISPS facilities came on line, but what has surprised us is the distance that so many of our students and captains are travelling to attend MCA courses here in Phuket. Over the last twelve months we have welcomed professional seafarers from USA, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Sweden, Norway, France and the UK, in addition to our local student groups from Thailand, Malaysia, India, Hong Kong and Indonesia.”

The upswing in tourist destinations in the region spreads across several countries from Bali, the Philippines and Papua New Guinea to the Solomon Islands and Bill O’Leary, principal consultant to the Malaysian National Fund on marine development and one of the four partners in Galileo, commented:

“Safety and security at sea have always been important but over the last few years there has been an international review of maritime practices and this has led to new inter-governmental regulations and training requirements.

”Also insurance underwriters and ship owners are becoming aware of the need for higher standards and real practical experience in training exercises such as fire-fighting, rescue and survival operations and disaster management. MCA certification is the standard they trust and that is what we are now able to deliver in amazing Phuket”

Photo: Courtesy of Seanews.