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PH, Indonesia, and Japan in joint maritime exercises

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), together with the Republic of Indonesia-Directorate General of Sea Transportation (DGST) and the Japan Coast Guard, is hosting the multilateral biennial maritime pollution exercise to combat threats against the environment.

The Regional Maritime Pollution Exercise dubbed Marpolex will run until July 5.

Commander Michell Ursabia, the spokesperson of the Coast Guard District Southeastern Mindanao, said the five-day activity will involve sea phase drills at Davao Gulf to simulate firefighting, search and rescue operations, aside from oil spill response and containment of major oil spill incidents.

The activity will formally kick off on July 2 to be graced by PCG commandant, Admiral Elson Hermogino, Director General of Sea Transportation Agus Pumomo, and JCG vice commandant, Vice Admiral Takahiro Okushima, JCG.

Seven ships and one fixed wing air craft from PCG; three oil spill response, search and rescue, and firefighting vessels from the Indonesian counterparts will participate for the exercise.

Meanwhile, the Japanese Coast Guard’s 105-meter patrol large vessel equipped with a helicopter will take part for the first timein the exercise.

Further, Ursabia said the Marpolex 2019 will showcase the drills to test the level of preparedness of participating countries; enhance the interoperability in combating oil pollution at sea; and introduce new techniques, strategies and effective assessment in oil spill response operation.

He said the drills will also encourage participation and involvement of the stakeholders in the oil industry in the common effort to combat, control and recover oil spill.

Also, a seminar on shoreline assessment operations or shoreline damage assessment, calculation of operational cost of the exercise and environmental damage loss (claims and compensation) is also scheduled for participating delegations to be provided by the International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association-Global Initiative for Southeast Asia.

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