The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore on Wednesday (2 December) said the SG-STAR Fund Taskforce (SFTF) has developed a CrewSafe audit programme based on Singapore’s crew change model to establish safe and scalable ‘corridors’ for crew change.
SFTF is part of the Singapore Shipping Tripartite Alliance Resilience (SG-STAR) Fund, the first global ground-up tripartite initiative with international partners including the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), the International Maritime Employers’ Council (IMEC) and the International Chamber of Shipping, to work with stakeholders in seafaring nations on concrete solutions for safe crew changes, starting with the Philippines.
The SG-STAR Fund is recently joined with support from more international organisations – Global Maritime Forum Maritime Industry Crew Change Taskforce, INTERTANKO, Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, and World Shipping Council, as well as seven port authorities from Abu Dhabi, Antwerp, Barcelona, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Sines, and Vancouver.
SFTF is led by the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA), with members from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), Singapore Maritime Officer’s Union and Singapore Organisation of Seamen, in order to develop the audit program.
The audit program was developed to help ensure quality checks on quarantine/holding, medical and swabbing facilities in crew-supplying countries. Please refer to Annex A for more details.
SFTF has since appointed auditors to conduct assessments at the recently inaugurated IMEC-ITF safe quarantine processes and facilities in Manila, Philippines, namely St. Giles Hotel and Marriot Hotel, as well as the safe quarantine processes by the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association at Marriot Hotel and the AMOSUP Seamen’s Hospital Molecular & PCR Laboratory.
SFTF expressed satisfaction that these facilities fulfil the CrewSafe criteria, complying with the following Safe Management Measures, among other requirements. (Please refer to Annex B for the listing of these four facilities.)
SFTF 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 said it 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.
“Singapore takes our responsibility to facilitate safe crew change seriously. We are pleased to work with our global tripartite partners to accelerate the development of practical solutions for crew change amid the pandemic,” said,” said Quah Ley Hoon, Chief Executive of MPA.
“We are also pleased to have the support of ports from Abu Dhabi, Antwerp, Barcelona, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Sines, and Vancouver, as well as international maritime organisations such as the Global Maritime Forum Maritime Industry Crew Change Taskforce, INTERTANKO, Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, and World Shipping Council to recognise the CrewSafe and other programmes by the SG-STAR Fund as a global initiative to facilitate safe crew change. We look forward to welcoming more like-minded partners to join us in this global alliance.”
“The SFTF aims to have a gradual global recognition of the CrewSafe process that identifies the safe and secure facilities,” said Nitin Mathur, SSA Council Member and Chair of the SFTF.
“Such acknowledgements by national governments and international organisations will ensure greater participation and bring a long-term solution to crew movement across national borders.”
Related: Singapore: MPA trials new technology and improves procedures to facilitate crew change
Related: SG-STAR fund receives USD 500,000 from ITF and IMEC to support seafarer welfare
Related: Singapore: MPA establishes floating Crew Facilitation Centre and resilience fund
Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 3 December, 2020
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