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Crew change vital to maintaining global transportation chain, says INTERCARGO


As International Labour Day, on May 1, approaches, it is more important than ever to remember the critical role played by seafarers in continuing to transport food, medicines and other essential goods during the COVID-19 pandemic, says INTERCARGO, the organisation representing the world’s quality dry bulk shipowners.


“Seafarers must not be forgotten in these extraordinary times,” says Mr Dimitris Fafalios, Chairman of INTERCARGO. “The issue of crew change must be at the top of the industry’s agenda. Seafarers are amongst the world’s key workers, vital to the global transportation chain. All maritime nations, ports and airports should, as a matter of urgency, permit the travel in/out and sign-on/off of seafarers, with the necessary safety procedures, allowing them to join from and repatriate to their countries of residence with seafarer’s documents and without visas, while the consulates are closed in the seafarers’ countries of residence.


“Without efficient crew changes, the supply chain would break down leading to basic product shortages and greater hardships for people around the world,” adds Mr Fafalios.


“It must be remembered that some of these seafarers may have served their 4-9 months tour of duty and are not able to be relieved even after serving 12 months or more on board ship,” says Mr Jay K. Pillai, INTERCARGO’s Vice-Chairman, as per a release.

 

Source: Exim News Service: London, April 29

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