Entry ban for non-residents: impact on crew changes

20 Mar 2020 / Australia

The Federal Government has banned non-residents from entering Australia from 21:00 hours local time yesterday (19 March).

Australian Border Force (ABF) say they plan to continue to facilitate crew changes, however, there is no confirmation that ship’s crew are exempt from the entry ban for non-citizens. After the border closure announcement yesterday, ABF issued advised:

Maritime crew arrangements:
We are working through the specific arrangements for maritime crew but we confirm that it is the Government’s intention to permit following:
- International maritime crew will be permitted to enter Australia to join a vessel;
- Ships and their crews arriving at Australian Ports will be permitted to berth and operate; and
- Crew signing off a vessel at an Australian port will be permitted to transit and depart Australia, or proceed to join another vessel in Australia.

In Western Australia (WA), Police have instituted a new law whereby any crew joining a vessel must be quarantined for 14 days before being permitted to take a flight to a regional port such as Dampier and Port Hedland.

Further, a number of ports and terminals have banned crew changes altogether while a number of local service providers in the chain (transport, hotels etc.) are advising they can no longer handle joining crew.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Australia, contact GAC Australia at [email protected]

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