The amended Migrant Workers Act (AMWA) requires that direct insurance is provided to seafarers; the scope of P&I cover cannot satisfy this requirement.
The language utilised in certain paragraphs of Section 37-A of the AMWA/RA 10022, and within Rule XVI of the Omnibus Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) and Insurance Commission Guidelines (ICG), is incompatible with the principle of pay-to-be-paid.
The compulsory insurance requirements envisage the seafarer being covered in full. P&I cover routinely applies a deductible.
Certain obligations under the Act extend beyond those provided for within the standard crew agreements currently in force, and appear open ended.
Even if contained within a contract of employment, some of the obligations under the Act would still fall outside the scope of P&I cover.
Manning Agents can arrange insurance cover for seafarers using an insurance provider accredited by the Insurance Commission.
The position of the Clubs in the International Group of P&I Clubs (IG) as outlined in the UK P&I Club's Circular in September 2010 (Ref: 17/10) has not altered. (See below).
P&I Clubs provide cover to vessel Owners and Charterers for their third party liabilities. The provision of compulsory insurance for seafarers under the AMWA is the responsibility of the manning/recruitment agent. Members will need to liase with their manning agents to consider how to achieve compliance with the AMWA.
It will be for each Member to decide whether they insist that cover is taken out with a local insurer approved by the Insurance Commission or, alternatively, whether they are happy to authorise their Manning Agent to provide the "Certificate of Cover".
The obligation to evidence compliance with the compulsory insurance provisions of the Act relates to those seafarers deployed from 8th November 2010 (not 7th November as previously advised). We are advised that there is a possibility the POEA may amend this date to coincide with the new POEA SEC, which comes into force on 12th November.
Amendments to POEA SEC: The final draft of the POEA standard employment contract has been circulated. A list of amendments and additions to the contract can be found below.