Covid 19 - Maritime

The International Labour Organisation Adopts Global Seafarers Vaccination Program Proposed by the Republic of Cyprus

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) has officially adopted a resolution for a global seafarers’ vaccination program proposed by the Republic of Cyprus.

The resolution calls for a mapping exercise whereby the number of vaccines required for seafarers ashore at seafarer supplying countries need to be identified with the collaboration of shipowners’ and seafarers’ organisations, governments and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). Once the identification process is completed a new resolution will be formulated in order to secure the number of vaccinations required.

Following the adoption of the resolution, Vassilios Demetriades, Cyprus Shipping Deputy Minister, commented:

The challenge of facilitating crew changes has had a significant impact on the mental and physical well-being of seafarers and safety of vessels over the past year. Cyprus has always been dedicated to social responsibility and taking a proactive approach to the global challenges faced by shipping. We were determined to find a realistic approach to a global seafarer vaccination program and are extremely pleased to see our draft resolution accepted by the ILO.”

According to the Information paper submitted by the Government of Cyprus to the Fourth Meeting of the STC (Part I), “Cyprus was one of the first countries worldwide that recognized seafarers as key workers and introduced all necessary measures to facilitate crew changes amid the COVID-19 pandemic. These measures resulted, since May 2020, to crew changes and repatriation of more than 12.000 seafarers through Cyprus’ ports and airports. Cyprus would be supportive to any action undertaken towards formulating a coordinated approach aiming for a global solution and expresses its willingness and determination to work constructively with all interested parties towards pursuing the deployment of a seafarers’ vaccination program at global level in an efficient way”.

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