The Federal Government has confirmed that restrictions previously placed on sailors being quarantined if they have docked in countries with a high incidence of COVID-19 is greater than 1000 cases, has been rescinded.
This implies that all cargo ships currently at anchorage are allowed to berth and offload their cargo. However, the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 strongly advises that all maritime practices in relation to COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, should be consistent with international practices, including:
- Embarkation, disembarkation, and changes of crew should be discouraged. Sailors are to stay on their ships upon berthing, in which case no quarantine processes or facilities will be required.
- All port officials, inspectors, agents, and stevedores from onshore who go aboard ships for their routine assignments should observe infection prevention and control measures including frequent hand sanitization and the wearing of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
It was also confirmed that the above decision will be communicated to all relevant government agencies.