Private firm authorised to receive boat licence applications
MEMBERS of the public now have the option to submit their application for a licence to operate their outboard engine boats through a private company authorised by the Marine Department, said an officer from the department’s Examination and Certification Section.
The option to apply for licence through Intrepid Yachting can be beneficial especially to green IC holders as, the officer said, “normally priority is given to locals at the department”.
In an interview with The Brunei Times yesterday, the officer who declined to be named, said the department is collaborating with Intrepid Yachting in facilitating the course for boat operators to attain ‘Class 9 Terhad’ (outboard engine boats) licence.
“The syllabus for the course is still endorsed by us and we are in charge of conducting the exam at the end of the course as well, while Intrepid organises and facilitates the teaching in the course.
“The course at Intrepid will also be conducted in English which is an advantage for foreigners who wish to apply for the Class 9 Terhad licence,” added the officer.
The collaboration which started last year enables applicants to attend and complete the ‘Class 9 Terhad’ course through the private company as there is currently a long queue of applicants in the department’s waiting list, said the marine officer.
“There are more than 900 applicants in the waiting list for the course now,” the officer said, adding that the majority of the applications are from Brunei-Muara, with Belait coming in second.
The officer went on to say that among the main difficulties in meeting the ‘overwhelming applications’ from the public is the shortage of staff and finding the ‘right’ time slots to conduct the course.
“Some of the applicants are self-employed like water-taxi drivers or fishermen, if we take their time every day for the whole two weeks (duration of the course), it’s going to impact their incomes.”
The officer then added that outsourcing the licensing course to private companies is one of the department’s initiatives to continuously improve their services to the public.
“We also welcome other interested parties to send us their proposals and work with us if they meet the required standards.”
As of press time, Intrepid Yachting could not be reached for comments.
The Brunei Times