COVID-19 – MPA updates crew change guidance and issues new requirements for ships arriving in Singapore

News & Insights 1 November 2021

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​The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has made further updates to its requirements for cargo ships undertaking crew changes in Singapore. The new Port Marine Circular PMC 39 supersedes its PMC No. 38 of 2021 and PMC...

Man on oil tanker

​The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has made further updates to its requirements for cargo ships undertaking crew changes in Singapore. The new Port Marine Circular PMC 39 supersedes its PMC No. 38 of 2021 and PMC No. 15 of 2021.

As per the latest guidance, the MPA has removed its earlier restrictions on crew with recent travel history to Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, and sign-off crew from vessels that have called at these countries within the last 21 days, to undertake crew change in Singapore subject to the MPA’s procedures.

Sign-on crew are required to quarantine in the crew’s originating country according to the number of days required by the Singapore Immigration and Customs Authority (ICA), unless they are eligible for Singapore’s Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL).

Fully-vaccinated signing-on crew can board their ship in Singapore when shore-based personnel e.g. repair vendors, equipment service providers and superintendents are still on board. Unvaccinated sign-on crew can only embark after any shore-based personnel have disembarked.

The latest MPA crew change system is available here.

MPA has made further updates to the requirements on ships arriving in Singapore via PMC 40 of 2021, which supersedes PMC No. 31 of 2021.

The key change is that shore-based personnel needing to board vessels at anchorages, shipyards, terminals and marinas in Singapore will be required to take an Antigen Rapid Test (ART) under the Employer-Supervised Self-Swab regime, instead of the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test during Rostered Routine Testing (RRT). This applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated shore-based personnel.

The owner, agent and Master of the vessel being boarded by shore-based personnel must check for (and not allow shore-based personnel to board without) proof of compliance with the RRT regime, or if they have any specified symptom (coughing, sneezing, breathlessness, a runny nose, loss of sense of smell or anosmia) or are otherwise physically unwell.

PMC 39 and 40 are available for download below.

Category: COVID-19

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