Novel Coronavirus Q&A

04 Feb 2020 / China

GAC China has prepared a list of answers to questions related to the current novel coronavirus outbreak, as follows:

  • Is there any impact on Chinese port operations?
    Except river ports in Hubei province, operations at other sea and river ports remain normal.

  • Is there any impact on vessel berthing and unberthing in Chinese ports?
    Vessel berthing and unberthing in Chinese ports is not affected by the novel coronavirus. However, in most ports, vessels must conductself-inspection and declare non-infection on board before pilot and tugboat application.

  • How is the epidemic affecting ship declaration formalities?
    At present, ship declaration formalities in most ports remain normal. Some port authorities require submission of body temperature monitoring forms and health declaration cards or online declaration and appointment as an alternative.

  • How is it impacting the efficiency of operations in Chinese ports?
    Migrant workers returning home for family Lunar New Year reunions and delayed resumption of work has contributed to a labour shortage. A decline in work efficiency can be seen at all Chinese ports during the holiday.

  • What protection and control measures are being taken by Chinese ports?
    Measures taken by ports mainly include the follows:
    (1) Visitors need to make an appointment in advance.
    (2) Temperature measurement is a must at port entrance.
    (3) AII visitors should wear masks and make registration.
    (4) Some port areas are restricted for non-business-related visitors.

  • Is there any impact on crew embarkation and disembarkation at Chinese ports?
    According to the urgent notice from the Ministry of Transport on 30 January regarding requirements on epidemic prevention and control as well as water transportation assurance, crew members are not allowed to disembark. If crew disembarkation is necessary under special circumstances, written application shall be submitted for approval in advance and could be arranged upon approval.

  • Is the provision of ship supplies continuing as normal at Chinese ports?
    For epidemic control purposes, boarding crew are not allowed to order provisions by themselves. Only qualified suppliers may provide such services and proper registration shall be made at local regulatory authority in advance.

  • Is customs clearance working as normal for spare parts deliveries?
    So far, customs clearance for ship spare parts has not been affected by the epidemic, except at Laizhou port in Shandong province and Shulanghu port in Ningbo. We handle customs clearance and spare parts delivery in compliance with the existing regulations of local customs. However, in some ports, filing and registration in advance are required by the local customs and regulatory authority.

  • What is the impact on arrangements for boarding of ships by owner's representative?
    Up to now, at Yingkou, Panjin, Tianjin, Taizhou, Zhangzhou, Xiamen, Putian and Fangcheng port, ship boarding for owner's representative remains unaffected. However, for epidemic control purposes, such an arrangement is not recommended/permitted for such at other ports.

  • Is Cash to Master("CTM") service affected by novel coronavirus?
    Due to the impact of delayed resumption of work, CTM could be handled in Shanghai, Jiangyin, Taizhou, Zhenjiang, Putian, Quanzhou, Zhangzhou, Fuzhou, Gulei, Ningbo, Jiaxing, Zhuhai from 3 February, with application made to bank in advance. For the other ports not listed, CTM will be back to normal from 10 February.

  • Is there any negative impact on ship's bunkering with low sulfur fuel oil ("LSFO") at Chinese ports?
    Bunkering service has not been affected, but the LSFO supplier is running with low inventory. Therefore, confirmation with local fuel oil suppliers and application to local regulatory authorities in advance is highly recommended.

  • What shall we do when crew on board have a fever, cough or other suspected coronavirus symptoms?
    The ship should inform ship agent, terminal, customs and MSAimmediately. Meanwhile, the affected crew on board should remain isolated and the case should be reported to local health commission for guidance.
    Upon ship berthing, the boarding agent should wear protective outfit and carry out work procedures with Captain in an open area. If the crew member needs medical treatment, contact 120 (telephone number for local emergency health assistance) for ambulance pick-up to a designated hospital.

  • When will the Customs, MSA, immigration and port authority resume to work?
    They will comply to the relevant regulations of local government. Meanwhile, there will be a person on duty and regular ship operation and formalities will not be affected.

  • Is manifest declaration affected in Chinese ports?
    So far, all the manifests can be declared to Customs.

  • When will GAC office reopen?
    The GAC Shanghai office will open on 10 February 2020.

For further details and updates, or information about operations in China, contact GAC China at [email protected]

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