This BIMCO COVID 19 weekly report for the week ending 18 March covers the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Myanmar, Russia, Ukraine, United States, Tokyo MoU and the latest from the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
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 and the ILO.
The below represent the latest information from the IMO.
The Myanmar's department of Marine Administration issued Marine instruction 1/2022 regarding further extension of the validity of STCW certificates that are expiring between the period of 1 April 2022 to 30 June 2022 shall be extended to 30 September 2022 without need to submit application at the DMA. For full details, please refer to the said marine instruction issued via an IMO circular letter no. 4246/Add.11.
1.**The following measures are in place :
2. Via an IMO circular letter no. 4535 dated 15 March, the Russian government has informed the IMO of the following:
** Source: North P&I club
The Ukrainian government has advised, via an IMO circular letter no. 4532, of the following recommendations for crew changes due to the ongoing Russian aggression against the country:
The United States Coast Guard has issued Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) 02-21 Change-4 " COVID-19 Safety Requirements in the Maritime Transportation System". Change 4 to this MISB advised that the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued no new guidance for maritime travel and continues to require mask wear in indoor areas of conveyances and US transportation hubs. All previous guidance outlined in MSIB 02-21 CH-3 remains in effect.
The Tokyo MoU issued interim guidance on 8 March 2022, relating to the Ukrainian seafarer repatriation under the current Ukraine - Russia conflict, which is guidance given in addition to the interim measures relating to COVID 19 circumstances. Travel and crew changes have been made more difficult due to the combination of the said conflict and the COVID-19 pandemic. The effect of repatriation applies not only to Ukrainian seafarers but to other seafarers as well that are caught up in the conflict. The guidance centres on application of flexibility and pragmatism; for example, allowing seafarers to remain onboard until it is safe for them to return home or return to safe countries. Guidelines for port States are also indicated in the said guidance with flexibility to be borne in mind regarding the seafarer's status and obtaining the necessary confirmation from the flag State in relation to extension of their service or contract.
The International Labour Organization (ILO) issued the following on maritime labour issues and COVID-19:
On 21 January 2022, WHO issued an updated global technical brief and priority action required for Member states to enhance readiness for Omicron ( B.1.1.529), of which WHO has given an overview. The overall risk related to the new variant of concern Omicron remains very high for a number of reasons (eg significant growth advantage over Delta leading to rapid spread in the community) and continuing to result in significant increases in hospitalisation as well as posing overwhelming demands on health care systems in most countries. The rise is also due to evidence indicating immune evasion causing the quick spread of Omicron and research efforts are ongoing to better understand Omicron’s escape potential against vaccine- and infection induced immunity. A risk-based approach to adjust international travel measures in a timely manner is recommended and efforts to accelerate COVID-19 vaccination coverage as rapidly as possible should continue. See WHO advice for international traffic in relation to the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant for additional information.
Please see BIMCO-WHO for more information.
According to GISIS today, the list of countries (48) informing the IMO of their national focal point of contact for crew change and repatriation of seafarers are: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, the Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, the Cook Islands, Cyprus, Dominica, Ecuador ( new) Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Libya , the Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Morocco ( new) Myanmar, New Zealand, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Singapore , Slovenia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden,Thailand , Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and Vanuatu.
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.
Access BIMCO's COVID-19 related articles and advice.
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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