Manila, Singapore seafarer safe corridor preparations progress

Singaporean authorities have green lighted hotel conditions in Manila as seafarer safe corridor preparations between the Philippines and the key Southeast Asian shipping hub develop.

To establish safe and scalable corridors for crew rotation, the Singapore Shipping Tripartite Alliance Resilience (SG-STAR) Fund Taskforce has developed a CrewSafe audit programme based on Singapore’s crew change model. The programme helps ensure quality checks on quarantine/holding, medical and swabbing facilities in crew- supplying countries. Auditors have been conducting assessments at quarantine facilities in Manila.

The fund is a global initiative, featuring many shipping associations and seven port authorities, working with key stakeholders in seafaring nations on concrete solutions for safe crew changes, starting with the Philippines.

MPA will streamline application procedures for sign-on crew from these accredited facilities boarding ships in Singapore

Auditors have given the thumbs up to the safe quarantine processes and facilities in Manila, namely the St Giles Hotel and Marriott Hotel, as well as the safe quarantine processes by the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association at the Marriott Hotel and the AMOSUP Seamen’s Hospital Molecular & PCR Laboratory.

The fund is now is looking at further enhancements of the CrewSafe audit programme, which could include the use of electronic tamper-proof smart wearable devices while the crew are in quarantine, as well as secure document processing for onboarding crew.

“Given the endorsement by the auditors, MPA will streamline application procedures for sign-on crew from these accredited facilities boarding ships in Singapore, in line with the objective of facilitating crew change in a safe and responsible manner,” a release from the fund stated, giving hope that crew changes can be sped up between the Philippines, the number one crew supplier in the world, and Singapore, one of the world’s best connected port cities.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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