Time has been revealing Philippines how great and dignified the Filipino Seafarers are. At the birth of sea trade, Filipinos showed close inclination to the sea that made them susceptible to marine occupation. Until various developments in the maritime industry emerged, still Filipinos proved their cleverness. 

The Philippine maritime industry never ignored this fact. Regarded as the world’s largest supplier of seafarers in the global merchant fleet, no one can ever deny that our seafarers are doing great in their profession. They were able to distinguish themselves among others to emerge the best. 

The Filipino Association for Mariners Employment, Inc. (FAME), the largest association of manning companies in the Philippines which is composed of ninety-two (92) regular member-companies and six (6) associate members has been existing and working for the development, promotion and progress of the maritime industry for thirty-one (31) years now. And this fact was never strange to them. Thus, all projects, endeavors and activities held were heading on the objective of promoting more and improving the maritime industry in the Philippines. 

Regarded the seafarers as the major player and the most important element in the maritime industry, they have been working also to support and protect them. Knowing the integrity they have given to the Philippines by being the most preferred crew among other nationalities because of the character and excellent performance, they saw that it is time to return them favor for what they were achieving. Considering that the yearly Maritime Week Celebration is on the list of coming scheduled events, FAME thought of holding a special event for the Filipino seafarers. 

As they take the lead in a step to give the Filipino Seafarers the importance they richly deserve by honoring their efforts and sacrifices, they have found a new partner to work with to achieve this goal. 

SMART Communications Inc., one of the biggest telecommunications company in the Philippines who have been creating and developing effective communication measure with special mention to the seafarers, was timely then looking for a way to promote their product intended especially for the seafarers to enable them to connect with their love ones. 

Knowing FAME, they immediately approach them to present their proposal. As they meet and started to know the objectives of each party, they agreed to come up with one project that will uplift the image of the seafarers as well as thank them for their efforts and great achievements. For SMART, they want to thank the seafarers for patronizing their products and services as well as let them know that they have a new efficient product for them, which is the SMART Link Satellite Services. 

The project was finally decided to be a concert. A grand concert which is entitled “Ang Marino. Bow! A Salute to the Filipino Seafarers Concert” which aims to pay tribute to the Filipino Seafarers regarded as the modern day heroes as well as honor them for their great contributions to the Philippines. The concert’s concept is to depict the life of a seafarer, reveal his thoughts, his sentiments, stuff he has put up with, the things he sacrificed, the importance of their profession thus significantly contributing to the country’s economy. Mostly songs but combined with dances, stunts, sketches, vignettes are the creative devices that will be used to bring the message across. 

FAME in its close coordination with other maritime associations, immediately extended the project to the maritime associations to make it a maritime industry activity. And it was well cooperated. Indeed, the maritime industry stakeholders jointly worked for the success of the project. 

To commence the “Ang Marino. Bow!” Concert, A Pre-Concert Cocktail was hosted by FAME, Inc. last 15 September 2005 at La Azotea, Casa Marinero, NYK-FIL Bldg., Gen. Luna and Sta. Potenciana Sts., Intramuros, Manila which aimed to thank the over-all sponsor of the said concert, SMART Communications, Inc.; as well as to give special night for all maritime stakeholders and government officials to untie from their busy days. Nyoy Volante with his band enchanted everyone with his lovely songs. And to entertain and excite the audiences, one of the sexy girls from Viva Hot Babes, Maui Taylor hosted the night with Vince Ripoll of Magsaysay Maritime Corporation. The cocktail was highlighted by the presence of Capt. Gregorio S. Oca, POEA Administrator Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz and representatives from SMART Communications Inc. 

A Souvenir Program was also published to commemorate the historic concert and was launched during the concert itself. 

The Concert was finally held on 24 September 2005 at the Araneta Coliseum, Cubao Quezon City. It was successfully held and well attended by the people in the maritime industry. 

Philippine artists including Nyoy Volante, Regine Velasquez, Ogie Alcasid, Kyla, Arnel Ignacio, Ruby Rodriguez, Aiza Seguerra, Chynna Hortaleza and Richard Gutierrez graced the concert. Selected talents from member-companies of FAME also participated as Marino Idols and Marino Choir. They were very much applauded for their great performance. 

It was made more special with the message given by the representatives from SMART Communications Inc. in the person of Mr. Mon Isberto, Head of SMART Public Access Department and Ms. Josephine J. Francisco, President of FAME, Inc. extending the gratitude of each party for the good partnership in achieving each goal hand in hand. 

What strikes most the heart of the seafarers and the maritime industry as well, was the statement of Ms. Josephine Francisco in her speech which runs, “At sa ating mga minamahal na mga marino, sana po’y nagustuhan ninyo itong aming munting handog sa inyo at sa inyong mga pamilya and together let us work to protect our position as the biggest supplier of seafarers to the world’s merchant marine fleet today and beyond. . As long as there are seas and oceans… there will always be ships that will carry trade and commerce across the globe. And who else will do this? No other than our great Filipino seafarers… known to the world for their hardwork, technical competence, discipline, integrity, loyalty, adaptability, and performance par excellence. At pagsinabing world-class na marino…walang iba kundi…“Pinoy pa rin!” 

Indeed, it’s true that this momentous event was all dedicated to all of you Filipino seafarers. Congratulations for job well done!