COVID-19 Coronavirus

Updated November 2020

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This page includes links and articles of general interest and will be updated when relevant information is available. 

Links to Steamship Mutual alphabetical list of country/jurisdiction updates 

Please click on letter to link to country/jurisdiction section below:

      A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Film release: Marine Media Enterprises in association with Steamship Mutual present "Coronavirus - Crew Change"

Film release: Marine Media Enterprises in association with Steamship Mutual present "Coronavirus - Stay Safe On Board"

Film releaseMarine Media Enterprises in association with Steamship Mutual present "Coronavirus – Mental Resilience On Board" 

Film release: Marine Media Enterprises in association with Steamship Mutual present "Coronavirus – Protection on Board"


Links to industry sites and articles 

Guidance for ships / crew / medical updates

Articles/P&I/Charter Party issues

Crew change (also see our list of country updates for location specific information)

  • Film release: Marine Media Enterprises in association with Steamship Mutual present "Coronavirus - Crew Change"
  • IG press release 19 October 2020 drawing attention to the vital role seafarers play in global trade and encouraging governments to work with and support the ICS’s Protocols for Ensuring Safe Ship Crew Changes and Travel During the COVID-19 Pandemic

  • BIMCO / Safety4Sea update on where crew changes are allowed
  • Crew Changes summit Joint Statement 9 July 2020 by the governments of the UK, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Indonesia, Netherlands, Norway, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, United States of America

  • UN agencies (including IMO) joint statement on crew changes 10 September 2020

  • IMO Crew change and travel safety protocols 5 October 2020
  • International Chamber of Shipping Recommended Quarantine and Testing Requirements For Seafarers Joining Ships 13 July 2020
  • International Maritime Health Association Getting Healthy Seafarers to a Ship July 2020
  • EU - Guidelines on Protection of Health, Repatriation and Travel arrangements for Seafarers, Passengers, and other persons on board Ships – 14 April 2020
  • JNG / ITF Joint Circular – Crew Changes and Contractual Rights & Obligations – 8 April 2020 
  • JNG / ITF Joint Statement 13 May 2020 references the IMO Crew change and travel safety protocols 5 May 2020.

  • Joint Release by MPA, SSA, SMOU, SOS, ITF, IMEC and ICS: SG-STAR FUND: First Global Tripartite Initiative to Support Countries for Crew Change 17 September 2020

  • IMEC/ITF - Enhanced Quarantine and Testing Facilities - Manila

  • Consumer Goods Forum letter to UN for recognition of seafarers as key workers 24 September 2020

Links to ports and country updates

Steamship Mutual alphabetical list of country/jurisdiction updates  

The information in this list is from correspondents and/or service providers and is updated regularly.


  • General information booklet of 22 April 2020 from correspondents McLeans regarding various African countries: Senegal, Guinea, Guinea Bisseau, Gabon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Liberia covering lockdown, status of port and quarantine regulations, availability of stevedores, immigration/crew rules, availability of disinfection.
  • Information from correspondents TCI Africa/Eltvedt O’Sullivan 22 April 2020 covering lockdown/curfew, port activity, airport in Cameroon; Congo; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea Bissau; Ivory Coast; Kenya; Liberia; Mauritania; Nigeria; Senegal; Tanzania; Togo.
  • Information from correspondents TCI Africa/Eltvedt O’Sullivan 4 May 2020 re crew change possibility in Cameroon; Congo; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea Bissau; Ivory Coast; Kenya; Liberia; Mauritania; Nigeria; Senegal; Tanzania.


  • Correspondents Neffous Shipping & Consulting (P&I) advise that the Algerian government extended the lockdown and curfew measures to 30 October 2020 from 11 PM to 6 AM in eight provinces, including Bejaia, Algiers, Jijel (Djen Djen), Annaba and Oran.




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  • Correspondents Interport advise 23/10/20 that crew changing is now being carried out in all maritime ports including Chittagong, Mongla and Payra, adhering to the international safety measures and best practices as per IMO guidelines. Seafarers are announced as “Key workers” by the Department of Shipping, Bangladesh.

  • 31 July 2020 update on flights allowed in and out of Bangladesh

  • Update from correspondents JF 31 May 2020 re crew changes, joiners, off signers

  • 24 May 2020: Ministry of Home Affairs Circular (& translated copy) allowing disembarkation of ship’s crew and stay in hotels until a flight is available


  • Correspondents Proinde webpage on Covid in Brazil

  • Correspondents Proinde Practical Guidance for Brazil 19 June 2020. A detailed downloadable 27 page document with guidance on crew changes, quarantine, testing etc.

  • Correspondents Brazmar report as follows on 24 November 2020. The Brazilian government issued Ordinance n. 518 on 12 November (office translation into English and original in Portuguese) (“the Ordinance”), extending the ban on entry of foreigners to Brazil by road/land or waterway for a further period of 30 days. Ordinance 518 revoked previous ordinances dealing with the matter.

    Overall, the wording of the Ordinance repeats the previous scenario whereby entry of foreigners by air is allowed, referring only to a prohibition of entry by road/land or waterway. Unlike the previous scenario, there are no more restrictions in relation to the requirement for the travel/health insurance that must be held by foreigners on entry in the country.

    As far as shipping is concerned, entry of crew members under the Ordinance remains allowed under similar rules summarised in article 3, paragraphs 1 to 3, which read as per below. Entry for medical treatment also remains allowed.

    Ҥ 1 The restrictions provided for in this Ordinance do not prevent the entry, by air or waterway, of sea crew to exercise specific functions on board of a vessel or platform operating in jurisdictional waters, provided that the migratory requirements appropriate to their condition, including to carry an entry visa, when required by the Brazilian legal system.
    § 2 The restrictions provided for in this Ordinance do not prevent the disembarkation, authorized by the Federal Police, of maritime crew for medical assistance or for connection of air return to the country of origin related to operational issues or termination of employment contract.
    § 3 The authorization referred to in § 2 is subject to a term of responsibility for the expenses resulting from the transshipment signed by the maritime agent, with prior consent of the local health authorities, and the presentation of the corresponding air tickets.”

    Further exclusions to the ban remain listed in articles 4 to 6 of the Ordinance, which are not particularly relevant to shipping.

  • Brazilian National Health Authority (ANVISA) issued a comprehensive guideline in relation to the measures to be adopted at the borders / entry points in Brazil for the control and prevention of COVID-19 (dated 25 March 2020)


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  • Transport Canada Marine Security Notification #2020-003 with information and guidance on how to minimize the risk of Coronavirus transmission, including what is deemed as Transport Canada’s “Temporary Direction and Guidance” for foreign and domestic flagged vessels.



  • Correspondents Cariconsult guide with brief information dated 19 June 2020 about Anguilla, Antigua, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Bonaire, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Cuba, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Montserrat, Puerto Rico, Sint Maarten/ St. Martin, St. Christopher (St. Kitts)-Nevis, St. Eustatius, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Correspondents Caribbean Marine Surveyors 30 October 2020 update covering Aruba, Bahamas, Bonaire, Colombia, Cuba, Curacao, Dominican Republic, French Guyana, St. Eustatius, Surinam, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela


  • Club correspondents Cave advise on 23/10/10: “Crewmembers of any nationality can enter or leave the country  without visa or special permit. Also, if the crewmembers have a negative PCR test, they can fly in domestics flights to the different Chilean ports. Therefore, the crewmembers have no restrictions. We also checked with the local ITF inspector and he confirmed the same.”

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  • Correspondents Huatai Circular 30 October 2020 Update on foreign crew change and disembarkation (English version)

  • Correspondents Huatai Circular 30 October 2020 Update on foreign crew change and disembarkation (Chinese version)

  • Correspondents Huatai Circular 30 September 2020: Test institutions designated or recognised by overseas Chinese embassies or consulates

  • New regulations for ship’s crew - for all international trading ships to Chinese ports
    Crew changes conducted at last port of call and within 14 days before the ships arrive in Chinese ports, all signing on crew members are required to hold NAT negative proof taken 3 days before boarding the ships by medical institutions as designated by the Chinese embassies and consulates.
    Ships, their shipping companies or agents are required to submit copies of NAT negative proof of signing on crew members at last port and signing on crew members boarding 14 days before the ships arrive in the first port of China. Read more in the International Chamber of Shipping (China) Liaison Office 24 September 2020

  • Oasis P&I Circular 25 September 2020 Epidemic control of crew members

  • Chinese Government Guidance on the prevention and control of Covid-19 on board (version 4.0) 11 September 2020

  • Correspondents Huatai Circular 7 September 2020: Chinese Ports - Special Epidemic Prevention and Control Measures on Vessels Having Changed Crew Overseas within 14 Days

  • Huatai Circular: MSA Operational Guidance for Ships and seafarers.
  • Oasis P&I Circular 18 August 2020 When a Vessel Arrives at China with Crew Members Tested Positive to Covid-19


  • Update from correspondents A&A Multiprime 18 May 2020



  • Correspondents Kacic & Brbora summary of Covid measures in Croatia 20 April 2020  including information on port restriction, ship inspections, seafarers (extension of validity of documents, crew changes, repatriations etc


  • EMCO update 15 October 2020

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  • Crew change update from Nordic P&I 2 November 2020


  • Correspondents E&M Consulting website updates for Haiti and Dominican Republic

  • Correspondents E&M Consulting report 5 October 2020 “The Dominican government has authorized ships that arrive or sail in the waters of the Dominican Republic to embark and disembark crewmembers in local ports” See announcement in Spanish and English.

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  • Update from Pandi Balt 21 May 2020

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Crew change update from Nordic P&I 2 November 2020


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  • Correspondents Mateos report that the Gibraltar Port Authority requires that the attached protocol/declaration be completed by every vessel, yacht, cruise liner, bunker barge that will call Gibraltar at either the  Western Anchorage, East anchorage, North Anchorage, any alongside berth, Quick turnarounds, medical disembarkations, OPLA and OPLB. No exemptions will be given. 


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  • Correspondents E&M Consulting website updates for Haiti and Dominican Republic


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  • FAQ for crew changes in India 17 May 2020

  • Port situation for dry bulk vessels 13 October 2020 from GAC

  • Operational scenario for tanker vessels arriving Indian ports 12 October 2020 from GAC 

  • Addendum 2 to DGS order 04 dated 25 March 2020 Guidelines on use of personal protective equipment

  • Indian government Guidelines to major ports on exemptions/remission of penalties plus issues relating to force majeure dated 31 March 2020 

  • DGS order 8 of 2020 dated 31 March 2020 on demurrage, ground rent etc.

  • Kolkata / Haldia Dock Complex Cessation of Force Majeure 10 June 2020

  • Order 12 of 22 April 2020 Standard Operating Procedure for crew change of Indian seafarers plus circulars from Kolkata, Mundra, Paradip, Sikka, Cochin, Goa

  • Order 21 of 20 July 2020 Standard Operating Procedure for repatriation of foreign seafarers from Indian ports

  • DGS order 13 of 21 May 2020 - Extension to the validity of Seafarer's Certificates and Ship's Statutory Certificates, periodical Surveys & Audits in view of COVID-I9 pandemic


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  • Haifa port will only allow vessels to berth 14 days after they have left the last Italian port. As a voyage from Italy to Israel takes about 4 days, a vessel will have to wait outside the port for about 10 days.


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  • Update from correspondents Budd 26 March 2020

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  • Entry restriction from 159 countries continue in principle, but Japan has started “Residence Track” with Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Taiwan - travelers from those countries are allowed to make entry but 14 days stay at home period is still applied to them. Japan also has a “Business Track” with Singapore from 18 September, allowing business travelers from Singapore (and vice versa, travelers from Japan to Singapore) to commute between home/hotel and office, although requested to refrain from using public transportation.

    See announcement of Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24 September 2020 here.


  • Update from correspondents Amin Kawar 23 March 2020

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  • Update from Mutual Service Korea 28 October 2020

  • Korean Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries: Guidance on permission for arrival and departure of ships September 2020 

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  • Update from correspondents Pandi Balt 21 May 2020


  • EMCO update 15 October 2020


  • EMCO update 15 October 2020


  • Update from correspondents Pandi Balt 21 May 2020

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  • Correspondents H Vassallo August 2020 Bulletin including protocol for crew changes

  • Protocol for conducting maritime support services Transport Malta 23 May 2020 



  • Update from correspondents Maclaims maritime Morocco 20 May 2020 (plus 4 May, 22 April, 18 and 20 March)


  • Covid measures update from correspondents P&I Associates 16 October 2020 


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  • Update from correspondents Africa Marine 26 March 2020


  • Crew change update from Nordic P&I 2 November 2020

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  • Update re crew changes and surveyor attendance etc from AIV Private Ltd of Karachi 22/10/20



  • Correspondents Del Rosario report that parts of the Philippines, incl. Metro Manila, back in lock down, 4 August 2020

  • Guidelines for the Establishment of the Philippine Green Lane to Facilitate the Speedy and Safe Travel of Seafarers, Including their Safe and Swift Disembarkation, and Crew Change During the COVID-19 Pandemic 2 July 2020

  • Protocol of the Philippines on crew change and repatriation of seafarer
  • Pandiman Bulletin 13 May 2020 New requirements for the arrival of all passengers into the Phlippines 

  • Requirements for vessels arriving in the Philippines and POEA General Guidelines
  • POEA Resolution 13 - Interim Guidelines for Deployment and Provisions for Repatriation of Filipino Seafarers 8 September 2020.
    This outlines an employers’ obligations in various circumstances where a seafarer’s deployment and/or repatriation may be impacted by COVID-19.


  • Update from correspondents Sulnave 27 May 2020


  • Correspondents Pinto Basto update 14 July 2020

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  • Local agents advise that if ships are calling at Saudi ports from China, the port health will attend on board on arrival to check the crew condition accordingly. The attached circular issued by the Ministry of Health provides a list of countries from which travel to Saudi Arabia is restricted. Anyone travelling directly from the listed countries will be quarantined for 14 days on arrival. In addition strict checks are now being implemented at the airports to determine the point of origin of any journey 
  • On 23 March 2020 the Saudi Government has today imposed a curfew for 3 weeks, the curfew is from 7pm to 6am. This will prevent surveyors from being able to attend ships for inspections during these times
  • Additionally the Saudi Ports Authority Circular 37 of 2020 outlines the preventative measures now in place


  • 72 hours before their arrival in Dakar, all vessels must email the following documents:
    • List of the last ten (10) ports of call;
    • Maritime Health Declaration;
    • Crew list specifying joining date and port of each crew member
    to both:
    1. the Harbour Master at, and
    2. the Maritime Border Health Inspection Services (Service de Contrôle Sanitaire aux Frontières Maritimes) at
  • Vessels arriving from an area affected by COVID-19 are now obliged to remain at anchorage until inspectors from the Maritime Border Health Inspection Services have carried out checks on board. The vessel will only be allowed to enter the port once it has received free pratique from the inspectors.
  • TCI Dakar Circular 24 March 2020 – note the recommendation for extra vigilance to avoid the embarkation of stowaways.

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  • Joint Release by MPA, SSA, SMOU, SOS, ITF, IMEC and ICS: SG-STAR FUND: First Global Tripartite Initiative to Support Countries for Crew Change 17 September 2020



The owner, agent or master of any vessel arriving in Singapore to conduct activities such as repairs, servicing, surveys and inspections which requires shore-based personnel to board the vessel, other than receiving bunkers and ship supplies, must notify and provide the relevant information, in advance, to the Port Master. 

The owner, agent or master of the vessel must inform the Port Master 3 days before the arrival of the vessel, that the vessel will be conducting the activities mentioned in the circular, and whether shore-based personnel (such as surveyors, P&I correspondents, superintendents and repair technicians) will be boarding the vessel at the anchorages or terminals.




  • Update from Mutual Marine Al Mushtaraka 15 May 2020


  • SAPIC organisation map with links showing measures taken by several South American jurisdictions 2 July 2020



  • Correspondents Grupo Stier advise that all persons entering Spain (Canary Islands included) require a negative PCR/COVID test result 72hrs prior to entry. In the event the person has previously been positive; a certified test showing the presence of antibodies will be required. Failure to provide said results can result in fines of up to €6,000. Spanish Official Bulletin 298 of 12 November 2020 (in Spanish)

  • Update of 25 June from Correspondents Tablada (for ports of Seville, Huelva, Cadiz, Algeciras)
  • Update of 26 March 2020 from Correspondents Hispania P&I

  • Law firm AIYON – Circular on COVID-19 and Port and Legal system in Spain


  • Correspondents Intermarc update 8 October 2020


  • Correspondents Mutual Marine Services & Transport al-Mushtaraka Ltd. Advise on 12 May 2020 that when a ship arrives at Port Sudan, if the voyage has taken 14 days or longer, the vessel can berth on arrival. If less than 14 days the vessel will have to wait at the anchorage until the 14 day period is reached. This does not apply to ships that arrive at Port Sudan via the Suez Canal, in which case all these ships must wait at the anchorage for 14 days. All ships on arrival will be boarded by the Port Health to check the crew as necessary.


  • Crew change update from Nordic P&I 2 November 2020 

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  • Update on crew changes from correspondents DIAS 11 November 2020

  • Update from correspondents Svertilov Marine 11 September 2020 including crew change information

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  • Correspondents Globalpandi Circular 5 September 2020 re crew changes and repatriations

  • Correspondents Pandi Venezuela 14 October 2020 update re restrictions at Venezuelan airports, repatriations etc

  • Correspondents Globalpandi Circular 6 May 2020 regulations for STS operations in Venezuelan waters


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  • Outline of Covid-19 measures from correspondents GAC 10 April 2020
  • 12 May 2020. Correspondents GAC report that the Yemeni Ministry of Health has declared the port city of Aden as a contagious city with the outbreak of the Covid-19 virus. Besides other epidemics such as Chikungunya, Dengue fever and malaria, Covid-19 virus is claiming the lives of dozens of citizens on a daily basis in front of a complete collapse of the health system and the absence of state authorities. The port of Aden in the meantime remains open and operational. 

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