With their latest advisory, the Maritime Industry Authority( MARINA) further extends the validity of STCW Certificates up to December 2021 or December 2022.

This could be a surprise for you but let’s dissect what the latest MARINA Advisory No. 2021-29 is telling us.

There are two categories where your STCW extension falls.

FIRST is when your COP was previously extended under the advisories “MA-2020-64”, “MA-2020-66”, “MA-2020-73”, “MA-2020-83”.

Let’s further understand what these mean.


Pandemic Advisories

MARINA has done a good job in helping seafarers extend the validity of their certificates. Last year, they manage to issue 4 advisories at the height of lockdowns.

This is just me but let’s call them Pandemic Advisories.

Now, let’s tackle the first guideline.



The very first advisory for extending our COP’s expiration came on the 14th of August 2020 in the form of MA-2020-64.

It states that all STCW Certificates of Filipino seafarers SERVING ONBOARD which are expiring between September 01, 2020 to October 31, 2020 shall be automatically extended for a period of SIX MONTHS from the date of expiry.


The very first Pandemic Advisory: MA-2020-64.



Slowly grasping the severity of this pandemic, the second advisory was issued two weeks later to complement the first one.

And instead of seafarers who are only serving on board, this advisory includes those who are also ashore.

Furthermore, the inclusive dates were extended from September 01, 2020 – October 31, 2020 to “September 01, 2020 – December 31, 2020”.

It also lengthens the extension from 6 months to 1 year validity.





The third Pandemic Advisory came almost a month after.

Realizing that seafaring amidst COVID-19 link is really that difficult, MA-2020-73 was deployed.

In this advisory, the COP expiration-extension covered a greater date between March 13, 2020 to December 31, 2020 thereby revoking the previous two advisories.

The certificate extension was still one year from the date of expiration for seafarers who are onboard or ashore.

I made a very detailed explanation about this on the article:

MARINA Implements One Year Extension on Expiring STCW Certificates.



The last Pandemic Advisory of 2020 was issued on November 16, 2020.

This was 95% the same as the third one except that they added the words “..and who are compliant with the following provisions of the STCW Convention, 1978, as amended;… (and then some provisions)”.

All other details are more or less the same but this advisory cancelled MA-2020-73.

Comparison between MA-2020-73 and MA-2020-83.

Comparison between MA-2020-73 and MA-2020-83.


The FIRST Guideline

The first guideline under MA-2021-29 says that if your STCW Certificates were previously extended under the above mentioned advisories but were not revalidated up to now due to lack of refresher training, it shall be extended up to December 31, 2021.

In other words, if your certificate expired between March 13, 2020 to December 31, 2020, they are still valid until December 31, 2021.

There is no need to file an extension to MARINA as long as your manning agency submits a list thereof to certificate_extension@mail.marina.gov.ph using Annex A of this advisory.

This applies to all seafarers who are currently on board and ashore.


Annex A of MA-2021-29


The SECOND Guideline


If your STCW Certificates issued by MARINA expires between 01 July 2021 to 31 December 2021, it shall be automatically extended for a period of one year from the date of its expiration.

There is no need to file an extension to MARINA as long as your manning agency submits a list thereof to certificate_extension@mail.marina.gov.ph using Annex A of this advisory.


MARINA’s Advice to Seafarers

Whenever lockdowns occur, training centers also close their classes to follow government policies.

However, Maritime Training Institutions (MTIs) offer blended learning for seafarers to complement the absence of face to face classes.

I experienced my first online training for my ATCTCO or Advanced Training for Chemical Tanker Cargo Operations way back early 2021.

Moreover, MARINA encourages all seafarers to apply for revalidation of their Certificate of Competencies (COCs) and Certificate of Proficiencies (COPs). This is after completing an approved online or offline course.

A 5-year validity shall be given to such certificates which is reckoned from the original expiration date of the previous certificates.

May the winds be on your favor



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