A Sustainable Beginning for Penang South Islands Fishermen

Kaarthiega Anantan

Certified seafarers at the “Mate Less Than 500 GT Domestic Voyage (Open)” course graduation ceremony.

In our pledge towards a sustainable future, a group of nine fishermen from the south-end of Penang Island became the pioneering batch to be awarded the Certificate of Completion (COC) for the seafarer course offered as part of the Penang South Islands (PSI) project’s Social Impact Management Plan (SIMP).

Fishermen from the south-end of Penang Island training to become certified seafarers.

The programme aims to optimise PSI’s sustainability potential by helping local fishermen to develop their technical skills and knowledge, as well as keeping abreast of latest fishing and navigation techniques. This initiative is underpinned by our responsibility to protect and add value to the community’s well-being where our business operates. With community-building being an integral part to nation-building, the programme further reinforces our ESG commitments outlined in Gamuda Green Plan 2025. 

After completing the seven-day “Mate Less Than 500 GT Domestic Voyage (Open)” course held at Akademi Maritim Penjana Ilmu, Penang and passing the oral exam at the Marine Department, the fishermen are now certified to handle larger vessels. Equipped with the COC that allows the fishermen to work in national waters as seafarers, they can widen their horizons and work on pontoons and ships of less than 500 gross tonnages. Alternatively, they can offer boat transport services for construction workers and tourists in the future to earn additional income.  

The course, composed of written and oral tests, exposed the fishermen to various maritime subjects – chartwork, basic training, rules and regulations, meteorology, general ship knowledge, general engineering knowledge, and Restricted Operator Certificate (ROC). The variety of offerings in this experiential programme reflects our well-rounded approach towards uplifting the quality of life of local fishermen through sustainable opportunities. 

Dato’ Seri Farizan Darus (third from left) speaking to Gertak Sanggul fishermen about the Social Impact Management Plan.

The programme, which has received an overwhelmingly positive response from the participants, will be a stepping stone to drive the next seafarer course for a new batch of fishermen and other outreach programmes that will open doors to sustainable avenues for the fishing community. 

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