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  • Approved сases of сrew сhange сross 13,000 as Singapore observes Day of The Seafarer
  • 2020 June 25 18:35

    Approved сases of сrew сhange сross 13,000 as Singapore observes Day of The Seafarer

    The annual Day of the Seafarer pays tribute to seafarers and acknowledges the contributions they have been making in maintaining the flow of goods. During this trying time of COVID-19 pandemic, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) recognises the challenges seafarers face and has been working with the industry, unions and seafarer missions to address their needs, wherever possible.

    MPA has been facilitating an increasing number of crew change requests for seafarers. This is being done in a controlled and regulated environment through a ‘safe corridor’ to minimise any risk to public health within Singapore as well as to the shipping community. Since 27 March 2020, MPA has approved more than 13,000 cases of crew sign-ons and sign-offs involving some 650 companies and 1150 ships. These ships comprise 42% tankers, 23% bulk carriers, 22% container ships, and the remaining of other ship types. MPA also continues to facilitate requests from vessels requiring medical care for seafarers. Since the pandemic, MPA has facilitated some 100 cases of seafarers requiring medical attention ashore to date.

    MPA, the Singapore Maritime Officers' Union (SMOU), Singapore Organisation of Seamen (SOS), and Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) prepared 1,000 care packs for ships in the Port of Singapore, reaching out to some 10,000 seafarers.

    Those present witnessed the delivery of care packs to a PIL vessel, ‘Kota Nasrat’, using a drone. This shore to ship delivery was conducted by another local start-up ‘F-Drones’ and demonstrates the use of new technologies to enhance safety and efficiency of deliveries traditionally performed by small launches or boats.

    MPA has also accepted the use of tele-medicine consultation since 18 June, for a doctor to assess if the crew is fit-to-travel for the purpose of crew signing off in Singapore. Instead of arranging doctors to go onboard, clinical assessment can be done via real-time video using end-point devices. Those present observed the process of tele-medicine consultation and how the fit-to-fly certificate is being issued.

    In addition, Dr Lam presented MPA’s contribution of S$200,000 to seafarer missions in a ceremony to Mr Vitalii Chaika, Honorary Secretary, Management Committee of the Mission to Seafarers Singapore. This grant will be distributed to the Norwegian Seamen’s Mission, the Danish Seamen’s Church, and the International Lutheran Seafarers’ mission, which support the work of the missions including counselling services and pastoral care, ship visitations and on-demand transportation for seafarers. This is part of MPA’s annual contribution to support the work of various seafarers’ missions. As announced in the MaritimeSG Together Package on 29 April, MPA is providing a one-off increase of S$50,000 to its annual contribution of S$150,000 to the seafarer missions.

    Ms Caroline Yang, President of Singapore Shipping Association, said, "The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the key roles of seafarers in the front line as they maintain the flow of vital goods, such as food, medicines and medical supplies. The Maritime SG care bags are our small token of appreciation to thank our seafarers for their sacrifices and contributions in the global fight against the virus. Let us recognise that seafarers are key workers, essential to shipping, essential to the world.”

    Ms Mary Liew, General Secretary of the Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union, said, “On the 10th Anniversary of the Day of the Seafarer, we want to express our heartfelt thanks to our seafarers for their invaluable contribution to the world, especially during this COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Seafarers have not only kept the global supply chain moving, but have been crucial in the fight against the ongoing pandemic, transporting daily necessities including medical supplies and protective equipment that help save lives stricken by the virus. Our hearts go out to all seafarers in these difficult times as the crew change continues to be a major global issue. SMOU has been working closely with our tripartite partners to facilitate crew change and improve guidelines so that this can be conducted safely and swiftly at our ports. We are here for you and will do our best to help you together with our tripartite partners and international organisations. Stay safe and we wish you strength, courage and solidarity as we move forward through this exceptionally challenging time.”
    Singapore Organisation of Seamen (SOS)

    Mr Kam Soon Huat, President of the Singapore Organisation of Seamen, said, "On the Day of the Seafarer, we call on everyone to treat seafarers with respect and dignity. On our part, to show our appreciation to seafarers, who are essential frontline workers, and encourage the shipping companies during the pandemic, SOS is setting aside more than S$1.5million to help defray the cost of accommodation and meals for seafarers who need temporary rest at the Seacare Hotel during the crew change.”


2022 September 30

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2022 September 29

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