Alfonso Castillero, chief operating officer, LISCR
In the small world of companies that administer flags, Alfonso Castillero is making big waves. In early 2019 he was appointed chief operating officer of Liberian International Ship & Corporate Registry (LISCR). He only joined the organisation in 2014, but arrived with a pedigree in innovation from 14 years at the Panama Registry where, in his words, he shifted the “focus of the Panama Registry from an organisation focused primarily upon revenue and volume, to one that equally balanced compliance.”
This was achieved by restructuring the Panama delegation at IMO, which had no connection with the Panama Registry. Under Mr Castillero’s control, the Panama delegation became an instrument of meaningful policy change, able to more effectively implement IMO regulation and apply these requirements to its fleet of vessels.
Taking over as Panama Registry director general in 2008, he set key targets on port and vessel security and removed the Panama Registry from the Paris MoU blacklist in a remarkable two years. This required an overhaul of archaic Panamanian law to allow the cancellation of non-compliant vessels (Law 57). As a result, detentions dropped and the Panama Registry was placed on the whitelist.
Under his leadership, radical changes are now taking place at the Liberian Registry, where he has publically spoken of the imperative for flags to be more technical capable and independent in aspects of the shipping industry, such as audits, inspections, ship design and construction while increasing cooperation with classification societies.
In his view, it is necessary for the flag to develop the technical aspects for which it has responsibility.