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China’s strict quarantine rules for cargo ship crew heighten supply chain woes

  • Chinese seafarers returning from overseas trips are being required to undergo quarantine of up to seven weeks in facilities usually paid for by the employers
  • China has also banned crew changes for foreign seafarers
  • Even vessels that have refreshed their crew elsewhere have to wait two weeks before they’re allowed to port in China

China’s new quarantine restrictions of up to seven weeks for cargo ship crews are expected to add to supply chain disruptions.

China is currently implementing a zero-COVID policy to prevent further deadly outbreaks. This requires Chinese seafarers returning from overseas trips to undergo a mandatory quarantine of up to seven weeks in facilities that are usually paid for by the employers.

China has also banned crew changes for foreign seafarers.

Even vessels that have refreshed their crew elsewhere have to wait two weeks before they’re allowed to port in China.

Shipping routes are now rerouted to avoid the COVID-19 restrictions placed in China, which will mean ships take longer to reach their destinations and the trips will be more expensive.

“China’s restrictions cause knock-on effects,” said Guy Platten, secretary general of the International Chamber of Shipping, which represents shipowners and operators, as quoted in a Bloomberg news report. “Any restrictions to ship operations have an accumulative impact on the supply chain and cause real disruptions.”

Photo by Siyuwj

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