Shipping needs urgent actions to survive virus crisis and maintain supply chains

Some National Maritime Authorities are already responding to coronavirus outbreak and havoc it brought on shipping, the best example being The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA)

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) empathises with the situation faced by the owners and managers of Singapore-registered ships (SRS) and is taking a pragmatic approach to assist the industry in overcoming coronavirus challenges:
– SRS owners and managers unable to repatriate seafarers who have completed the employment duration as stipulated in the seafarers’ SEA in accordance with Section 23 of the MLC Act may submit a request to MPA for extension of the sea service period;
– Consideration will be given to allow seafarers who hold foreign issued Certificates of Competencies (COC) to continue serving onboard SRS, if they are unable to revalidate their COC before the expiry date due to the COVID-19 outbreak;
– Consideration will also be given to the extension of mandatory statutory surveys,
inspections or audits. Application for extension of surveys/inspections/audits or validity
of statutory certificates may be submitted to MPA…

Proposed measures aren’t enough to mitigate devastating impact of pandemic on global shipping, to an extent of securing global supply chains from interruptions, but it’s a step in a right direction.
More must be done – first of all, complete suspension of all Caps and restrictions on fuels or scrubbers, and water ballast management. PSC control in ports must be restricted if not suspended whatsoever. The main and foremost, the only task and responsibility of shipping, is in doing everything possible in order to keep global supply chains working, in times of spreading pandemic and virus fears.
IMO meanwhile, in the midst of unfolding global coronavirus pandemic and growing threat of global economic crisis, found nothing else to do except to run, on Feb 17-21, so-called “The IMO Arctic Summit: PPR7”, a shameful and from all practical points of view, useless and harmful, meeting of a bunch of absolutely irresponsible organizations and people, with the purpose of working out regulation on heavy fuel oil (HFO) use and carriage in the Arctic. I look at them and wonder – are those creatures human?
I’m doing something of a mini-study on Clean Arctic Alliance, “a coalition made of non-profit organisations (NGO)”, and its’ activities.
“While the IMO has made some progress this week on controlling heavy fuel oil use and carriage as fuel in the Arctic, it is outrageous that Member States are prepared to accept another decade of threats from HFO spills to Arctic communities, the environment and wildlife,” said Clean Arctic Alliance Lead Advisor Dr Sian Prior.
Outrageous is this summit, outrageous is the existence of fraudsters and parasites thriving on Climate Change hoaxes, and in the times when real problems threaten and already kill people on a global scale, these parasites’ activities are nothing short of a crime.



My name is Mikhail Voytenko, I’m Russian, professional merchant marine navigator, by education and former experience. I own and run Maritime Bulletin website for more than 10 years. I've been involved in solving a number of piracy hijack cases, including the hijack of ro-ro FAINA, loaded with tanks. It was me who made public, and unravel, freighter ARCTIC SEA mystery. I've been also closely involved in a number of maritime disaster, one of them being MSC FLAMINIA major fire.