BIMCO Covid 19 weekly report of December 17, 2021

This BIMCO COVID 19 weekly report for the week ending December 17 covers the World Health Organization (WHO), Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, UK, Gard P&I club and the last of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Each week, BIMCO summarizes measures imposed by governments for maritime transport, including crew change, as well as updates from United Nations bodies such as IMO, WHO and the International Organization. (ILO).

1. World Health Organization (WHO)

On December 10, the WHO published a global technical sheet and the priority action required for Member States to improve preparedness for Omicron (B.1.1.529), which WHO has given a Overview. The overall risk from the new variant of concern Omicron remains very high for a number of reasons and also due to the fact that the overall risk of COVID-19 remains very high overall. A risk-based approach to adjusting international travel measures in a timely manner is recommended, and efforts to accelerate COVID-19 vaccine coverage as quickly as possible must continue. See WHO international traffic advisory regarding the SARS-CoV-2 variant Omicron for more information.

Please watch BIMCO-WHO for more information.

2. Government states


Please see the last update on December 8 provided by Shipping Australia Limited, including restrictions imposed by Omicron. Although maritime crews are exempt from travel restrictions under federal law, seafarers are still required to comply with the laws applicable to each state or territory, so both requirements should always be verified before setting off. go to Australia.


Via a IMO Circular Letter no. 4255 / Add.3, Belgium launched a campaign on December 6 to provide vaccination reminders to all seafarers arriving in Belgian ports in addition to already providing vaccination to all seafarers since July 2021 to support seafarers as key workers.


Following the Brazilian update from BIMCO provided in our COVID Weekly Report of December 10 (see below for easy reference), Westshore has kindly updated us with the following information provided by Promare:

  • The federal government released a new standard (# 662) postponing the application of the vaccine warrants (# 661) until December 18, 2021 due to a ransomware attack on their servers handling COVID-19 data and a subsequent Supreme Court ruling denying entry to seafarers who are not fully vaccinated without any quarantine being in place as a substitute. As a result, uncertainty has arisen regarding crew change procedures for seafarers who are not fully vaccinated and whether they would be refused entry from December 14 until today. However, from December 18, entry will be refused.
  • When the current rules come into force (December 18), those boarding / disembarking will be required to provide (1) full proof of vaccination and (2) proof of negative COVID-19 test, either from a rapid test of antigen performed 24 hours before embarkation / disembarkation or an RT-PCR test performed 72 hours before.
  • Crew changes are subject to health authority authorization, and seafarers who have been in Red List countries in the past 14 days may be required to undergo a 14-day quarantine, which is required for travelers coming from Red List countries by air.
  • Highly recommended that correspondents and shipping agents be contacted before your ship arrives in a Brazilian port. In addition, it is recommended to check with the naval authority / health authority / local port authority the current situation, as it may change from port to port.

BIMCO COVID weekly report of December 10 (extract on Brazil)

According to a Translation of ordinance 661/21 Provided by the Consulate General of Brazil in London, authorization for those who have recently traveled in the last 14 days to the below list of countries and flights to or in transit from the list below is temporarily suspended:

  • South Africa
  • Botswana
  • Eswatini
  • Lesotho
  • Namibia
  • Zimbabwe


Myanmar Maritime Administration Department has issued Maritime Instruction 11/2021 authorizing a further extension of the validity of Myanmar seafarer STCW certificates which expire between the period of January 1, 2022 to March 31, 2022 to be extended until June 30, 2022 without the need to submit an application to the DMA. For more details, please refer to said maritime instruction issued via IMO circular letter no. 4246 / Add.10.

Sri Lanka

According to information provided by GAC Hot Port News, the Ministry of Health lifted special travel restrictions applied to some African countries. The current restrictions are as follows for seafarers in accordance with the Section H of the October 25 Ministry of Health statement:

Foreign seafarers not fully vaccinated:

  • PCR test Day 1
  • 7-day isolation center quarantine
  • Release from quarantine subject to a negative test result
  • Direct travel to ship or airport upon release

Sri Lankan seafarers, not fully vaccinated:

  • PCR test Day 1
  • 7 days of home quarantine
  • Day 7 PCR or antigen test

Foreign and Sri Lankan seafarers, fully vaccinated arriving via airports:

  • Quarantine exemption subject to 72 hour PCR or 48 hour pre-arrival antigen test
  • If exempt from pre-arrival testing, the day 1 PCR test should be performed.
  • Exemption from quarantine subject to negative result of day 1 PCR test
  • PCR test required for symptoms of COVID-19

Foreign and Sri Lankan seafarers, fully vaccinated arriving via seaports:

  • Day 1 PCR test at the quarantine center
  • Release from quarantine subject to a negative test result


According to information provided by GAC Hot Port News, the countries mentioned on December 2 have been removed from the UK’s Red List of countries. A quick glance at government websites confirms this information. At the time of writing, there are no countries on the Red List for the following:

3. Others

Industry organizations

The Gard P&I club has issued advice to help their members differentiate between operational expenses and recoverable insured costs with respect to COVID-related crew claims and how best to prepare for those claim documents.

4. IMO

The circulars below represent the latest information to date from IMO.

  • Addendum no. 35 / rev. 8, published on October 13, 2021, provides a consolidated list of IMO members who have so far notified IMO of their designation of seafarers as key workers to date with the latest additions from Bulgaria and from Pakistan. The full list is presented below:

  • Addendum n ° 42 to IMO circular no. 4204 “Coronavirus (COVID-19)” published on September 17, 2021 regarding the joint IMO / ILO statement on maintaining the obligations of medical assistance to seafarers and accelerating vaccination programs for seafarers.
  • Addendum no. 43 to the IMO circular n ° 4204 “Coronavirus (COVID-19)” published on November 1, 2021 proposing a list of world ports offering vaccinations for seafarers.

5. IMO crew change – National focal point for crew change and repatriation of seafarers

According to GISIS today, the list of countries (46) informing IMO of their national focal point of contact for crew change and repatriation of seafarers is: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belgium , Brazil, Canada, Cook Islands, Cyprus, Dominica, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Libya, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Myanmar, New Zealand , Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and Vanuatu.
Source: BIMCO

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