ITF News Update – 09th to 12th August

UAE launches initiative to protect seafarers’ rights and welfare | Seatrade Maritime News – 9th August

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has launched the ‘Supporting our Blue Army’ initiative to protect seafarers’ rights and welfare. The initiative to improve the quality of life of seafarers in the UAE follows a recent Resolution on marine wrecks and non-compliant ships passed the Council of Ministers designed to put a stop to unpaid crews and vessels abandonments in its waters.


Authorities monitor anchored ship in Batangas after 28 seafarers contract COVID-19 | CNN Philippines – 9th August

Dozens of crew members of a ship currently docked in Batangas have tested positive for COVID-19, the Philippine Coast Guard said on Monday.


When Will the Shipping Crisis End? | Modern Tire Dealer – 9th August

You would be hard-pressed to find a tire dealership that has not been impacted in some way or another by the ongoing shipping crisis.


Offer vaccines to seafarers, Mersey charity urges Government | Liverpool Business News – 9th August

Based at the Port of Liverpool, Liverpool Seafarers Centre offers support for ships crews from all over the world and is now urging the Government to offer COVID vaccines to seafarers.


Spain once again forced to deal with controversial livestock carrier | Lloyd’s List – 9th August

All 18 crew members were evacuated from the 54-year-old vessel, which had no livestock on board at the time of the fire  

Five months after the Spanish authorities were forced to cull 1,600 cattle on board the ageing Lebanese livestock carrier Elbeik, the vessel was back in Spain and caught fire during the weekend. It required a two-day operation to extinguish the flames


Cyprus: The Seafarers’ Vaccination Programme Of Cyprus Flag | Mondaq – 10th August

Cyprus was one of the first countries that recognised seafarers as key workers and implemented a formal crew change process. These measures resulted in more than 20,000 seafarers being repatriated or able to return to work since May 2020. Cyprus continues to prioritise seafarer welfare and is keen to support a practical and coordinated solution to the global crew change crisis.


Fire seen on Iran-linked tanker berthed at Syria’s Latakia port | Lloyd’s List – 10th August

Rising hostility between Iran and Israel quickly triggered speculation about the cause, which Syrian media said began when fire broke out in the hold

Iranian media pointed out the blast coincided with a meeting between Israel’s incoming national security adviser and their counterparts in Russia. Syrian media said two workers were injured when a fire broke out in one of the ship’s hold, citing the fire brigade commander


Infected crew on Grand Progress rescued | Lloyd’s List – 10th August

Out of the 20 seafarers on board, 16 tested positive for coronavirus. Most of them have been sent to hospitals, while few are being medically examined on the ship, pending relief crew

The vessel had been stranded in Zhoushan waters for more than a week before the rescue operation started


Union alerts on fake maritime security certificates | Vanguard – 10th August

The Nigeria Merchant Navy Officers & Water Transport Senior Staff Association (NMNO&WTSSA) has called on the federal government to urgently nip the illegal operations of some people in the maritime industry posing as merchant navy officers.


Shipping community steps up again in wake of Greek wildfires | Lloyd’s List – 10th August

Devastating wildfires during the past week are the latest in a long line of disasters of one kind and another that have plagued modern Greek history but have highlighted the conscience of the country’s maritime community in extending a helping hand to the homeland and their compatriots

Prominent shipowners Panos Laskaridis and Evangelos Marinakis among the first from the industry to respond to the plight of thousands affected by fires ravaging swathes of Greece, but donations from shipping usually take into account longer-term needs, too


Preventable death of seafarer during crew change off QLD coast highlights need for national approach | ITF Seafarers – 11th August

The Australian Government must urgently implement a nationally-consistent best-practice plan for crew changes on international trading vessels following the preventable death of a seafarer during a high-risk transfer off Queensland’s Sunshine Coast this week.


Ports face the greatest crisis since the start of container shipping | Eminetra – 11th August

Ports have always faced delays due to waves, fog and storms, but the pandemic has caused the greatest disruption since the start of container shipping 65 years ago.


40 years after, Nigeria rekindles hope for seafarers with new ‘mission’ | The Guardian NG – 11th August

Barely 40 years after the Mission to Seafarers (MTS) went into extinction in Nigeria, stakeholders in the maritime sector have mobilised mercenaries to revive the lost glory of the seamen.


Rising seafarer abandonment cases prompt talks on emergency fund | Splash 247 – 11th August

Three of the world’s largest seafaring nations are proposing the establishment of a seafarers’ mutual emergency fund to support abandoned crew. China, Indonesia, and the Philippines have introduced the idea of a mutual emergency fund at the recently held International Maritime Organization (IMO) legal committee as abandonment cases are heading for another record.


Review: Flawed Implementation of International Laws Leaves Seafarers in Legal Vacuum | Human Rights at Sea – 11th August

London. UK.  The consequences of port closures during the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted flaws in the implementation of international law designed to protect the human rights of those at sea, according to a study by Dr Sofia Galani, Senior Lecturer in Public International Law at the University of Bristol and Human Rights at Sea Advisory Board member.


Johnson & Johnson : Boers offering free Covid-19 jabs to seafarers | Market Screener – 11th August

Crew services specialist Boers has launched seafarer vaccination programmes at German and Belgian ports, as shipping executives warn of onboard Covid-19 outbreaks because mariners are not getting vaccines quick enough.


ICTSI donates Covid-19 vaccines to Philippines local governments | Seatrade Maritime News – 11th August

Philippines terminal operator ICTSI is supporting the country’s vaccination programme through its’s Foundation with the donation of vaccines and the international logistics of orders.


Seafarers treated worse than criminals are finally allowed home | ITF Seafarers – 12th August

Eighteen crew have made it home after spending 21 months trapped on their abandoned ship. The MV Jinan (IMO 8322844) was left at the Port of Mombasa, Kenya in August 2019 by its Beirut owners Al Jinan Shipping Co. The general cargo ship is registered in Zanzibar, an autonomous region of Tanzania.


Philippines, Myanmar, Indonesia, Venezuela and Latvia reported as hardest countries for crews to secure vaccines | Splash 247 – 12th August

The Philippines, Myanmar, Indonesia, Venezuela and Latvia have been identified by top shipmanagers as the areas with the largest challenge in securing the supply of Covid-19 vaccines.


Ningbo terminal closure and what if Covid hits more Chinese ports | Seatrade Maritime News – 12th August

The news that Ningbo Meidong Container Terminal had suspended operations on Wednesday over a single Covid case raises wider fears for the supply chain as the Delta variant outbreak in China continues to spread.