BIMCO COVID 19 weekly report dated 15 July 2022

COVID 19  3 factors to help you stay safe


This BIMCO COVID 19 weekly report for the week ending 15 July 2022 covers the International Maritime Organization (IMO) including crew change national contact point, Argentina, Ukraine and the latest from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO).

Every week, BIMCO summarises measures imposed by governments for sea transport, including for crew change, as well as updates from United Nations bodies such as the IMO, WHO, ILO and the Port State Control MoU regimes. 

1. IMO

The below represent the latest information from the IMO.  

  • Addendum no. 35/rev.11 issued on 22 March 2022 provides a consolidated list of the IMO members that have so far notified IMO on their designation of seafarers as key workers. The latest list of 65 notifications is shown below with the addition of Morocco :

  • The IMO Secretary General, in addition to IMO circular letter no. 4524, which appeared in our weekly COVID-report dated 11 March, has expressed his deep concern via IMO circular letter no. 4524/Add.1, regarding the spillover effects of the military action in Ukraine on global shipping, logistics and supply chains. The security threats to merchant shipping can be found on this NATO link.
  • The IMO held an Extraordinary General Meeting of its Council on 10 and 11 March to discuss the impact of the present conflict situation in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov ( the "high risk areas")  on shipping and seafarers. Several decisions were made, in particular, an agreement to establish as provisional and urgent measure, a blue safe maritime corridor for the safe evacuation of seafarers and ships from the high risk areas allowing ships to commercially navigate and mobilise as necessary, thus avoiding the military attacks, whilst protecting and securing the maritime domain. As COVID-19 is still ongoing, these decisions would also overlap with measures taken for the pandemic.  In addition, the same measures applicable to protect seafarers during COVID-19 are also applicable here as addressed by the Council to support the seafarers, in particular, as key workers, they are given unrestricted movement with ships allowing to sail from the ports of Ukraine at the earliest opportunity given,  and due to the conflict, it was proposed that government states exempt their seafarers from mandatory military service. 
  • Addendum no. 44  to IMO circular letter No. 4204, issued on 28 February, publishing a joint IMO/ILO/UNCTAD /WHO statement urging continued collaboration to address crew change crisis, safeguard seafarer health and safety, and avoid supply chain disruptions during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • Addendum no. 4/Rev. 4 to IMO circular letter No. 4204,  issued on 28 February, providing an updated version of the ICS guidance for ship operators for the protection of the health of seafarers.  


2. Government States


The following extensions approved for OVERSEAS relating to the expiration dates of titles and certificates as advised by the Argentinian Ministry of Transport to the IMO via an IMO circular letter no. 4287/Add 9

- Expiration date between  January 1 and 31 December 2020 extended till July 31, 2022.
- Expiration date between January 1 and June 30 2021 extended for 18 months from expiration date.
- Expiration date between July 1  and December 31 2021 extended to 31 December 2022.
-Expiration date between January 1 and March 31 2022 extended to 9 months from expiration date
-Expiration date between April 1 and July 31 2022 extended till 31 December 2022
-Expiration date between August 1 and September 30 2022 extended till 31 December 2022

All Ratings Titles and certificates which expiration date is between January 1 and 31 December 2022 will be extended for 12 months from expiration date. 
-Titles and certificates which expiration date was between April 1 and July 31 2022 extended till December 31 2022. 


Update as at 7 July from North P&I Club: 

  •  Ukrainian seaports are still closed for inward/outward passages.
  • There are three very small ports on River Danube in operation, namely Reni, Izmail and Ust-Dunaysk. These ports have quite poor handling facilities and accept only small sea/river-going vessels and self-propelled barges.
  • No signs of progress in arranging of humanitarian corridor for the vessels blocked in the Ukrainian ports.
  • Odessa still subject to some missile attacks.


3. World Health Organization (WHO)

The WHO issued a statement on 12 July in respect of the 12th meeting held by the International Health Regulations ( 2005) ( IHR) Emergency Committee on 8 July 2022 regarding COVID-19 pandemic WHO. The said meeting confirmed, amongst others, that COVID-19 continues to constitute a public health emergency of international concern and urged all governments to continue to apply public health and social measures proportionate to their epidemiological situation, stressing the continued use of effective, individual-level protective measures to reduce transmission. The set of temporary recommendations issued by WHO was reviewed by the IHR Emergency Committee which can be viewed at the end of the WHO Statement.

Please see BIMCO-WHO for more information.


4. IMO Crew Change - National Focal Point for Crew Change and Repatriation of Seafarers

According to GISIS today, the list of countries (56) informing the IMO of their national focal point of contact for crew change and repatriation of seafarers are: Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba (Kingdom of the Netherlands)  the Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belgium Brazil, Canada, Chile Cook Islands, Costa Rica Cyprus, Dominica, Ecuador, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Guinea-BissauGreece, India, Indonesia, IrelandIsrael, Italy, Jamaica, Libya , the Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Morocco ,  Myanmar, New Zealand, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Singapore , Sint Maarten ( Kingdom of the Netherlands) ,  Slovenia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Thailand , Tunisia, Ministry of Transport ( new), Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and Vanuatu. 


5. Port State Control - MOU 

Due to the situation in Ukraine, collective guidance harmonising the Port State Control activities ( PSC) has now been issued by the Indian Ocean, Paris, and Tokyo MoU on PSC and Vina del Mar Agreement relating to the repatriation of seafarers. Full information can be found in an IMO circular letter no. 4524/Add.2 dated 31 March 2022. 

See also BIMCO Port State Control Regimes- MOU 


6. ILO


The International Labour Organization  (ILO) issued the following on maritime labour issues and COVID-19:


7. Others 

 The UK P&I Club's version 1.39  on Global Crew Change Advice covers update on South Korea.


    8. BIMCO

    BIMCO General COVID-19 Links

BIMCO is continuously monitoring COVID-19 restrictions and its impact on the shipping industry in particular on crew changes. Below are some of the type of information  currently being provided by BIMCO :

You can also view all information on our COVID-19 landing page.

Ai Cheng Foo-Nielsen
in Copenhagen, DK


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Veritas Petroleum Services (VPS) publish regular Bunker Alerts based entirely on fuel samples and have kindly permitted BIMCO’s Members to access this information.

The Bunker Alerts are not intended to be an evaluation of overall bunker quality in the port or area concerned, but usually highlight a specific parameter within the fuel which has raised a quality issue.


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