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Governments urged to follow Cyprus example on crew changes

Photo: MPA Crew MPA_0.jpg
Crew change in Singapore
The Cyprus Shipping Chamber (CSC) has called on governments to follow the example of Cyprus by adopting measures to facilitate crew changes.

The Nicosia government “understanding the crucial role of shipping in international trade supported our industry and seafarers, by adopting measures early enough to facilitate crew changes in Cyprus ports, whilst ensuring the safety of public health”, said the CSC.

The CSC said it is deeply disappointed that, “despite repeated appeals and proposals from the International Shipping Industry, there is a delay from governments around the world in finding practical solutions to the very serious issue of crew changes and repatriation of seafarers with expired contracts, in many cases beyond three months, bringing seafarers and the shipping Industry to the verge”.

The Chamber said that despite the very difficult conditions and restrictive measures due to the Covid-19 pandemic, seafarers worldwide continued to work tirelessly, transporting vital goods and keeping world trade in motion.

“Without the immediate action of governments around the world, there is a serious risk the supply chain will collapse very soon, with a negative impact on the economies of the countries which are already facing a crisis due to the pandemic,” said the CSC, whose members employ more than 60,000 seafarers.

“We urgently call on all governments to act in a similar manner [as Cyprus] immediately, so a viable solution can be found to this unacceptable situation that has kept our seafarers “captive” on board ships for months,” said the Chamber.

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