THE INTERNATIONAL Chamber of Shipping, along with partners, is encouraging ships in ports around the world to sound their horns at 12 noon local time on 25 June in honour of the IMO’s Day of the Seafarer, to remind the world of the urgent need to vaccinate all seafarers.

Last year’s campaign aimed to bring the crew-change crisis to the world’s attention. Now, nearly a year on, the number of crewmembers impacted by border restrictions has halved to 200,000, according to ICS.

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However, new waves of infection are seeing a return to travel bans for seafarers. Access to vaccines is also a pressing issue, more than half of the international seafarer workforce is from developing nations that have limited access to vaccine supplies.

ICS Secretary General Guy Platten said: “We know just how important last year’s Heroes at Sea Shoutout was in raising the attention about the crew change crisis. Unfortunately, with the new variants and the dreadful outbreaks in India, seafarers are once again being forgotten.

“The Ever Given incident showed just how important shipping and our seafarers are to global supply chains. Therefore, we are once again calling for ships at port across the globe to sound their horns at 12 noon local time on 25 June to mark the Day of the Seafarer and ensure that seafarers voices are heard.”

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