Nieuw Statendam, Holland America Line's new ship, will be launched in December this year. Photo: Holland America Line

Holland America Line, the luxury subsidiary of cruise industry leader Carnival Corporation, is so impressed with the ability of Filipino seafarers that it wants 400 more for the company’s newest vessel. 

“What we’ve found is that our Filipino partners are smart, energetic and have a great sense of humor, and we really want that in connecting with our guests,” HAL president Orlando Ashford said.

The new ship, called the Nieuw Statendam, will be launched later this year with a capacity for 2666 guests. Ashford said around 1300 new employees would be needed, and 34% would be Filipinos, ABS CBN News reported.

HAL operates two schools training staff in the Philippines, at Antipolo and Intramuros. Hiring of Filipino seafarers has fallen due to competition from other countries, but Ashford believes his company will continue to need more employees to fill its positions.

“On the flip side, the employee gets an opportunity to literally see and experience the world,” he said.