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Hot PortNews from GAC

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Hot Port News from GAC

08-Apr-2020

ENHANCED COMMUNITY QUARANTINE EXTENDED
Luzon, Philippines

PORT REMAINS OPEN AMIDST ADDITIONAL PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES
Singapore

TEMPORARY PROHIBITION OF PLEASURE CRAFT MOVEMENT
Singapore

MARINE DEPARTMENT SPECIAL ARRANGEMENTS DUE TO COVID-19 (UPDATE)
Hong Kong

REDUCTION OF DUTIES/WITHDRAWAL OF ADDITIONAL CUSTOMS DUTY FOR FOOD ITEMS
Pakistan

BOARDING AGENTS MAY BOARD VESSELS AT TERMINAL
Djeno Terminal, Congo

Enhanced community quarantine extended
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Luzon, Philippines

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has approved the extension of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine until April 30, the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease announced on Tuesday [7 April]…

…The guidelines governing the implementation of the quarantine remain in effect…

…The government, which imposed enhanced community quarantine, [had been] supposed to lift the restriction on April 14…

(For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in the Philippines, contact GAC Philippines at philippines@gac.com)

Source: Extract from Philippines’ Presidential Communications Operations Office press release dated 7 April 2020

Port remains open amidst additional precautionary measures
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Singapore

The Singapore Ministry of Health has issued a media release on “Additional Measures to Minimise Further Spread of COVID-19”. All business, social, or other activities that cannot be conducted through telecommuting from home [are] suspended from 7 April 2020 to 4 May 2020 (inclusive). Essential Services and their related supply chains, as well as entities that form a part of the global supply chain, are exempted from the suspension.

As maritime is a key economic sector and the Port of Singapore is critical in ensuring the flow of goods, it remains open for cargo operations and will continue to provide essential marine services including bunkering, ship stores and ship supplies.

Maritime-related activities [are] exempted from the suspension, including:
a. Shipping e.g. ship operators and liner operators
b. Shipping-related services e.g. ship management and ship agencies
c. Safety and navigation services e.g. class societies, pilotage, salvage and towage
d. Port and terminal operations including construction
e. Port marine services e.g. ship chandlers, bunkering, ferry services.

(For information about operations in Singapore, contact GAC Singapore at singapore@gac.com)

Source: Extract from Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore press release

Temporary prohibition of pleasure craft movement
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Singapore

In line with the Ministry of Health (MOH) directive to reduce non-essential movement of persons and interactions in public and private places, all pleasure craft movement for leisure/cruising purposes within the port limits of Singapore [are] prohibited from 7 April 2020 to 4 May 2020 (inclusive)…

…The issuance of cruising permits for visiting pleasure yachts to cruise within the port limits of Singapore will be suspended until further notice.

Marinas may continue to receive arriving visiting pleasure yacht, subject to compliance with the requirements for all vessels arriving at the Port of Singapore to submit the Maritime Declaration of Health to the Port Health Office… …Visiting pleasure yacht may depart the Port of Singapore provided they comply with the necessary departure clearance formalities. All arrival or departure movements for visiting pleasure yacht shall be conducted expeditiously from the port limits to berth, or from berth to the port limits.

Foreign passengers of visiting pleasure yacht arriving in Singapore will not be allowed to enter or transit through Singapore, while Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and Long Term Pass holders will have to serve a 14-day Stay-Home Notice (SHN). In line with MOH’s directive, those returning from certain countries [ASEAN countries, France, India, Switzerland, the UK and US] will be bussed to serve the 14-day self-isolation at dedicated SHN facilities. Foreign crew members of visiting pleasure yacht arriving in Singapore shall remain onboard…

(For information about operations in Singapore, contact GAC Singapore at singapore@gac.com)

Source: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore Port Marine Circular No.21 of 2020 dated 7 April 2020

Marine Department special arrangements due to COVID-19 (update)
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Hong Kong

The outbreak of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) has caused major disruptions to the global maritime industry. This notification seeks to inform relevant parties of the working arrangements of the Marine Department (“MD”) and to provide guidelines to address some of the concerns caused by Covid-19 pandemic.

HONG KONG SHIPPING REGISTRY
The Shipping Registry maintains normal services. To tie in with the response level under the “Preparedness and Response Plan for Novel Infectious Disease of Public Health Significance” in Hong Kong being raised to Emergency Response Level and to avoid people from gathering, advance appointment is preferable.

Enquiries and appointment can be sent via email, fax or by telephone.
Email: hksr@mardep.gov.hk
Fax: (852) 2541 8842
Tel: (852) 2852 4421, 2852 3066

SEAFARER EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENT
For crew members with sea service period beyond their original Seafarers’ Employment Agreement, MD issued a circular letter dated 7 February 2020 “Extension of Crew Agreement Service Period for Seafarers Working On Board HK Ships in response to the Outbreak of Novel Coronavirus”. No exemption or dispensation is required.

The services of Mercantile Marine Office continue by appointment via email, fax or by telephone.
Email: mmo_mdd@mardep.gov.hk
Fax: (852) 2545 4669
Tel: (852) 2852 3061, 2852 3063

SEAFARERS’ QUALIFICATIONS
MD maintains normal services for the application of Hong Kong Licences, Certificate of Proficiencies and Endorsements.

For seafarers with sea service period beyond expiry date of Certificate of Competency (CoC) or Consolidated Receipt of Application (CRA), please refer to the following arrangements:
a) If as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, ship managers are unable to deliver the Hong Kong Licence (“HKL”) on board before the expiry of the CRA, ship managers may apply via email or fax for MD to issue an official email with scanned copy of the applicant’s HKL to prove the original HKL has been issued and being is sent to the applicant.
b) If the seafarer is unable to revalidate his/her foreign issued CoC and consequently the HKL due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ship manager may submit an application form to MD, accompanied by a confirmation of extension of validity by the seafarer’s CoC issuing administration. MD will issue a confirmation to extend the HKL to enable the seafarer to continue to serve on that specified Hong Kong registered ship.
c) For Hong Kong CoC holders, MD will consider extending the validity of their CoC up to three months from the date of expiry.

For seafarers with expired medical fitness certificates, the ship manager may apply for an exemption to allow the seafarer to continue to serve on board that vessel.

All applications may be submitted to the Seafarers’ Certification Section by email or fax. Enquiries and applications can be sent via email, fax or by telephone.
Email: crt_mdd@mardep.gov.hk
Fax: (852) 2541 6754
Tel: (852) 2852 3148

SURVEYS, AUDITS AND STATUTORY CERTIFICATES
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, MD recognises that owners may encounter difficulties in arranging surveys, repairs, periodical servicing, or dry-docking to facilitate the periodical endorsement or renewal of relevant statutory certificates issued by Recognized Organization (RO) on behalf of the Government of HKSAR. For such reasons, MD may extend the validity of statutory certificates for a period up to three months from the window end date or expiry date of the certificates. To minimise the processing time, the owners shall apply to MD through respective RO for the extension of certificates using a special application form as follow: here

For the benefit of doubt, the above mentioned statutory certificates include Document of Compliance and Safety Management Certificate.

Under extreme situation, owners may require further extension of the certificates. MD may consider issuing extension of another three months with the support of the respective RO and documented attempt with best effort to comply with the survey requirements.

Remote audit is acceptable for DOC annual audit (but not renewal audit) provided prior agreement from MD with each RO is reached. Remote audit for SMC is not acceptable.

Enquiries can be sent via email, fax or by telephone.
Email: ss_css@mardep.gov.hk
Fax: (852) 2545 0556
Tel: (852) 2852 4510, 2852 4504

PORT STATE CONTROL
For non-Hong Kong ships, MD will accept ships calling Hong Kong port with evidence from shipowners that the respective flag State has provided relevant exceptional extension of statutory certificates either by way of exemption document or Flag circular.

Enquiries on PSC matters can be sent via email, fax or by telephone.
Email: ss_psc@mardep.gov.hk
Fax: (852) 2545 0556
Tel: (852) 2852 4506

NON-INTERRUPTED SERVICES
Apart from the above temporary contingency measures being put in place, MD assures the shipping community that services from MD to Hong Kong registered ships are provided as normal in order to support the continuous operation of the shipping industry in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic…

…Visit the following websites, as well as other sources, to note and obtain the updated information regarding COVID-19, and ensure appropriate measures are fully implemented to prevent the virus from spreading on board.
– International Maritime Organisation: http://www.imo.org/en/MediaCentre/HotTopics/Pages/Coronavirus.aspx
– World Health Organisation: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/events-as-they-happen
– International Labour Organisation: https://www.ilo.org/global/topics/coronavirus/lang–en/index.htm

(For information about operations in Hong Kong, contact GAC Hong Kong at shipping.hongkong@gac.com)

Source: Government of the Hong Kong SAR Marine Department update dated 3 April 2020

Reduction of duties/withdrawal of additional customs duty for food items
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Pakistan

Pakistan’s Federal Board of Revenue has notified a reduction in duties and taxes on the import and local supply of essential food items, including withdrawal of additional customs duty on the import of edible oil and oil seeds, until 30 June 2020.

For further details and updates, as well as information about operations in Pakistan, contact GAC Pakistan at pakistan@gac.com

Boarding agents may board vessels at terminal
Wednesday, April 8, 2020, Djeno Terminal, Congo

Following discussions with Djeno Terminal, boarding agents may now board vessels with the loading team at the terminal. They should, however, disembark, once clearance formalities are completed and maintain contact with the loading master for information about loading operations.

This reverses the announcement at the weekend that boarding agents would not be able to attend vessels at Djeno Terminal, as a measure to reduce the risk of COVID-19 contamination.

(For information about operations in Congo, contact the GAC Dubai Hub Agency Centre at hub.ae@gac.com)

Source: Société Générale de Consignation (SOGECO), Congo – GAC agent

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