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Hot Port News from GAC

The Port of Singapore



Dhamra, India


Panama Canal, Panama


Ash Shihr, Yemen

Suez Canal, Egypt


Crew change for cargo ships
Friday, March 26, 2021, Singapore

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has announced that it will continue to consider the following circumstances for crew change applications:
(a) crew whose employment contract has expired;
(b) additional crew on board whose sign-off would not affect the safe manning of the ship;
(c) change of crew due to the sale or purchase of ship;
(d) personnel who are not part of the ship’s crew such as superintendents and service engineers;
(e) compassionate grounds e.g. death of family member; or
(f) the crew is no longer medically fit to work onboard the ship.

As per the MPA’s Port Marine Circular No.10 of 2021 dated 25 March 2021, the requirements for signing-on and -off are as follows:


(a) In general, all signing-on crew are required to serve 14-day Stay-Home-Notice (SHN) in the crew’s originating country/region in the periodimmediately prior to his/her departure flight/ferry to Singapore. The crewshould be completely isolated in a room with a dedicated toilet with strictlyno interaction with others (including family members) at his/her place ofresidence, or serve the SHN in a dedicated facility/hotel.

(b) Crew from specific low risk countries/regions will either no longer be required to serve the SHN or serve a shorter SHN of 7 days in his/her originating country/region prior to departure for Singapore. Please refer to ICA’s website (https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/files/SHN-and-swabsummary.pdf) for the latest list of low risk countries/regions.

(c) The crew must have a negative result from a COVID-19 test (polymerasechain reaction (PCR) type) taken at a government-approved or ISO 15189-accredited testing facility at his/her originating country not more than 72hours prior to departure for Singapore.

(d) The crew must be certified fit-to-travel by a doctor at his/her originatingcountry not more than 24 hours prior to departure for Singapore.

(e) During the entire crew change process, including during the journey toSingapore, the crew should not be in a group of more than five (5) persons,and must remain in the same group. There must be no interactions betweengroups.

(f) The crew should only join his/her ship not more than two (2) days before theship’s final departure from Singapore. Ships departing for sea trial andreturning to Singapore is not considered final departure.

(g) Crew shall only join the ship in Singapore after all high-risk1 shore-basedpersonnel have completed their work on board and disembarked the ship.

(h) Meet-and-greet services must be arranged for sign-on crew arriving atChangi Airport, to escort the crew from the moment they disembark theplane to the point where they are handed over to the agent for the directtransfer to the ship or designated holding facility.

(i) Crew who have recovered from COVID-19 must submit documentary proofof his/her past diagnosis of COVID-19 based on the earliest positive PCRtest result.
i. If the date of the positive PCR test result is 21 days or fewer beforethe date of arrival in Singapore, he/she will not be approved for crewchange.
ii. If the date of the positive PCR test result is between 22 to 180 days before the date of arrival in Singapore, the recovered crew need not serve the SHN at his/her originating country/region nor take a COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours before departure for Singapore. If he/she develops symptoms prior to departing for Singapore, he/she must be tested for COVID-19.
iii. If the positive PCR test result is more than 180 days before the date of arrival in Singapore, he/she must serve a 14-day SHN at his/her originating country and take a COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours before departure for Singapore.


(a) The crew must not have gone ashore in the last 21 days before disembarking the ship, must have remained well and not had contact with any known or suspect case of COVID-19 throughout that period.

(b) The crew shall refrain from interacting with shore-based personnel at previous ports of call in the last 21 days.

(c) The crew must be certified fit-to-travel by a doctor in Singapore not more than 24 hours before disembarking the ship. Tele-medicine can be used to obtain a fit-to-travel assessment and certification. MPA will accept fit-to-travel certificates issued by Singapore Medical Council-fully registered doctors.

(d) Crew subjected to serology test shall remain onboard until production of a negative COVID-19 serology test result.

Sign-on and sign-off crew may stay at designated holding facilities for up to 72 hours.

The Singapore Shipping Tripartite Alliance Resilience Fund Taskforce (SFTF) has developed a CrewSafe audit programme that endeavours to assist crew source nations to bring a higher level of confidence and quality control checks into crew change processes such as quarantine/holding, medical and swabbing facilities.

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

Lighterage operation (for dry cargo vessels) at anchorage
Friday, March 26, 2021, Dhamra, India

Dhamra Port is always dedicated to deliver best in class services for customers and stakeholders on a continuous basis. As the Port is responsible for all safety, security and conservancy functions within port limits, any cargo operation carried out by vessels and barges within port limits, or undertaking lighterage operations by anchoring at extended port area will attract charges for such activities as per below wef 01st April 2021.

Lighterage operation charges per GT per hours (From Double Bank all fast Time to Double Bank All Cast off Time)

  • Mother vessels (vessels arriving with cargo to be transferred): US$ 0.001785 / GT
  • Daughter vessel (vessel receiving cargo): US$ 0.000790

Anchorage charges for vessels lying on their anchors in stream and carrying out transshipment/ lighterage operations. (Rate per GRT per hour)

  • Mother vessels (vessels arriving with cargo to be transferred): As per BTS
  • Daughter vessel (vessel receiving cargo): As per BTS

Double banking pilotage charges with tug assistance (If requested)

  • Mother vessels (vessels arriving with cargo to be transferred): –
  • Daughter vessel (vessel receiving cargo): As per BTS

The above charges will be solely applicable for Dry Cargo Vessels only.
Rest all charges will be applicable as per BPTS.
Permission for lighterage operation will be granted basis Custom permission.
Barge / Floating cranes / Fenders required for Lighterage operation should be arranged by the mobilizing Agency.
Tug hire charges for transportation of Agent /Custom, Inward/Outward clearance shall be as per BPTS.

(For information about operations in India, contact GAC India at india@gac.com)

Source: Adani Ports & Logistics Trade Notice No: 04/2021 dated 24 March 2021

Floating sea barrier works at Sentosa Beachfront & Sentosa Cove
Friday, March 26, 2021, Singapore

From 1 April to 30 June, floating sea barrier works will be carried out off Sentosa Beachfront and Sentosa Cove, within the working area bounded by the following co-ordinates (WGS 84 Datum):

1) 1° 15.529’N / 103° 48.332’E
2) 1° 15.390’N / 103° 48.445’E
3) 1° 15.309’N / 103° 48.527’E
4) 1° 15.327’N / 103° 48.546’E
5) 1° 15.379’N / 103° 48.528’E
6) 1° 15.404’N / 103° 48.468’E
7) 1° 15.544’N / 103° 48.356’E

8) 1° 14.388’N / 103° 49.719’E
9) 1° 14.270’N / 103° 49.844’E
10) 1° 14.270’N / 103° 49.844’E
11) 1° 14.241’N / 103° 49.945’E
12) 1° 14.288’N / 103° 49.865’E
13) 1° 14.406’N / 103° 49.739’E

According to the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore Port Marine Notice No.019 of 2021, the working hours will be 24 hours daily including Sundays and Public Holidays.

Realignment and joining of floating sea barriers will be carried out using crane barge and work barge. A tug will be deployed to assist the positioning of the crane barge and work barge.

A safety boat will be deployed to warn and direct craft in the vicinity to keep clear of working area.

Craft involved in the works will exhibit the appropriate local and international day and night signals.

When in the vicinity of the working area, mariners are reminded to:
a) Keep well clear of the working area;
b) Maintain a proper lookout;
c) Proceed at a safe speed and to navigate with caution;
d) Maintain a listening watch on VHF Channel 68 (West Control);
e) Communicate with West Control for assistance, if required.

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

Cost increases summary
Friday, March 26, 2021, Panama Canal, Panama

A number of Panama Canal changes will come into effect in the upcoming weeks. GAC Panama has prepared an infographic summarising the same.

For a copy of the infographic, as well as information about operations in Panama, contact GAC Panama at operations.panama@gac.com

Country open to visitors & crew
Friday, March 26, 2021, Seychelles

From 25 March, the Seychelles is open to all visitors/crew irrespective of their vaccination status.

Seafarers may enter from any country with no pre-travel quarantine required. They must, however, provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test done within 72 hours of departure from country of origin, complete Health Travel Authorisation and valid health insurance to cover any potential COVID-19 related costs.

Vaccination is not a prerequisite for performing crew change.

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

Source: Mahe Shipping Company Limited – GAC network agent

COVID procedures at oil exporting terminal
Friday, March 26, 2021, Ash Shihr, Yemen

PetroMasila Company, the Ash Shihr Oil Exporting Terminal operator, in conjunction with the authorities in Yemen have introduced various measures to control the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Tankers/crews of loading tankers must complete a 14 -day quarantine period prior to berthing at Ash Shihr Terminal.

Crew and security personnel who board vessels and reach the terminal in less than 14 days must have a negative PCR test immediately prior to boarding the vessel.

The Captain is to log the daily temperatures of the crew and advise immediately if any of the crew start to exhibit COVID-19 symptoms.

Due to terminal COVID-19 pre-work quarantine procedures, cargo inspectors are not allowed on site.

All the required documentation is prepared by ship/terminal staff.

The terminal follows strict COVID 19 quarantine procedures. All terminal personnel must complete a quarantine period. At the end of that quarantine period, they must have a PCR test. Only if that test is negative will terminal personnel be released from quarantine and permitted to join the work force.

Terminal personnel who board must follow the established COVID-19 rules in place on the vessel.

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

Battle continues to float grounded container vessel
Friday, March 26, 2021, Suez Canal, Egypt

Tugboat teams and heavy machinery are still battling to move the grounded vessel in the Suez Canal.

The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) is using dredgers and more than 8 powerful tugs and are being assisted by other local authorities in the operation. There is still no confirmed progress reported.

Canal transits remain suspended and there is currently no indication of when they will resume.

The Head of the SCA, Lieutenant-General Ossama Rabei, has said that no efforts will be spared to ensure the restoration of navigation and serve the movement of global trade.

All vessels arriving from the south (from the Red Sea) are requested to drop anchor out of port limits, as the Suez area is fully congested.

The next attempt to float the vessel will be on the evening high tide.

GAC is not associated with the grounded vessel. We are sharing Suez Canal Authority information through our daily Hot Port News bulletin as it becomes available, and are not in a position to elaborate or comment further. For further details, we suggest you approach the Suez Canal Authority or the vessel owner directly.

Green Lanes for off-signing foreign seafarers
Friday, March 26, 2021, Philippines

Until 21 April, foreign seafarers arriving in the Philippines may off-sign through seaports under the “Green Lanes” programme for crew changes provided that they hold a 9(c) crew list visa at the time of entry.

The matter of on-signers remains on hold.

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

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