Easing of crew change restrictions

14 Oct 2020 / China

Ten Chinese ports will resume foreign crew change operations with certain requirements in place, taking into account of the current COVID-19 situation.

According to a report in BIMCO (www.bimco.org) News and Trends, the ports allowing for foreign crew change are Dalian, Tianjin, Qingdao, Shanghai, Ningbo, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Haikou.

The following requirements should be followed to sign off foreign crew:
- comply with Chinese entry and staying regulations during the epidemic period;
- acquire a valid departing air, vessel or bus ticket;
- disembarking point has facility to arrange “point-to-point” transfer to the outbound gate within the same city;
- the ship in question has left the last foreign port in more than 14 days;
- crew on board keeps a sound health and quarantine record;
- crew change will be permitted at the designated Chinese port upon clearance by the Chinese Customs carrying out a proper quarantine checkout together with negative nucleic acid testing result;
- the shipping company is required to rent a car to transfer the foreign crew from the disembarking point to the outbound gatepoint directly within the same city, or to embark another outbound ship directly once disembarking without any further stay in China.

Shipping companies should closely monitor the port’s local quarantine conditions and implement a closed-loop management as per the quarantine requirements issued by the local port.

A quarantine circuit-breaker mechanism is introduced under which a shipping company’s foreign crew change operations will be suspended for 15 days if there are 5 cases tested positive cases in their ship aggregate, or suspended for 30 days if there are 10 positive tests. If there are more than 10 positive test results, the shipping company will not be allowed to operate until they pass a fresh assessment conducted by the relevant authorities.

For information about operations in China, contact GAC China at [email protected]

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