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    PGMA Signs Into Law Republic Act No. 9301

           Her Excellency President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has signed into law R.A. No. 9301, otherwise known as “An Act Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act No. 7471”.
           The new law (R.A. 9301) gives a broader definition of the phrase “Philippine overseas shipping” which under the old law (R.A. 7471) was limited to the transport of passengers and cargo by Philippine flag ships. Under the new law, it now covers any kind of shipping operation including the purchase and sale of ships.
           Additionally, the new law granted another ten-year income tax exemption to Philippine overseas shipping companies.

    RP-Cyprus Sign Maritime Agreement

           Maritime Industry Authority Administrator Vicente Suazo, Jr. announced recently that the RP-Cyprus Merchant Shipping Agreement has been signed by the two countries.
           Under the said agreement, both parties are required among others, to assist each other through the training and hiring of seafarers. Marine school graduates from both countries can spend their apprenticeship period aboard each other’s vessels and qualifications obtained thereat will be recognized by the two countries’ maritime bodies.

    PGMA Signs Into Law Republic Act No. 9337 (E-VAT Law)

           Her Excellency President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had signed into law R.A. 9337 (the Expanded Value Added Tax Law).
           R.A. 9337 has maintained the exemptions from VAT on the importation of vessels spare parts and training equipments for the overseas trade.
           Also, all sales and services rendered to overseas vessels shall be zero-rated for VAT purposes.

    JWC Lists Areas of Southern Philippines As “War Risk Areas”

           The Joint War Committee (JWC) of London has issued recently a notice listing certain areas of Southern Philippines as “war risk areas” thereby placing them in the category of Iraq and Somalia.
           The areas included are the southern coast of Mindanao between and including Polloc Harbor and Mate and the Sulu archipelago including Jolo. The inclusion of these areas in the list was done without any consultation made on shipowners nor on the Philippine government who may be greatly affected by a possible increase in insurance premiums when ships trade and/or navigate within the said areas.
Filipino Shipowners Association, Copyright 2011