Operations in ferrying tourists in Panglao waters may be affected if the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) does not resume its processing of new pumpboat registrations, said a tourism official in the town.
According to Reynaldo Bundal, president of the Panglao Island Tourist Association, more pumpboats used by tourists are being grounded amid the Philippine Coast Guardâ€™s (PCG) intensified drive against â€œcolorumsâ€ or unregistered seacrafts.
The strict patrol of the PCG will likely affect the income of both pumpboat operators and the local government unit of Panglao, Bundal said.
He noted that the PCGâ€™s drive against colorums has prompted boat operators to secure registrations.
However, the MARINA has stopped accepting registration from new applicants, Bundal said.
The MARINA is only currently processing renewal of registration but new applicants so far have not been able to have their boats registered.
Following the non-issuance, pumpboat operators are appealing to the MARINA to resume its acceptance of new registration.
Bundal admitted that many pumpboat operators have not been able to secure registration before but he attributed this to the PCGâ€™s previous lenient stand on the issue.
It was previously made known during a meeting of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) sitting as a committee of the whole last week that 40 to 45 out of around 100 pumpboats used by tourists for island hopping, dolphin watching and snorkeling are unregistered.
During the said SP meeting, the Coastal Resource Management Office of the municipality of Panglao reported the balatant operation of unregistered pumpboats in municipal waters. (Allen Doydora)Â