U.K. Chamber to Johnson: Don’t quarantine seafarers

Written by Nick Blenkey
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U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson: “It will soon be the time ... to impose quarantine on people coming into this country by air.”

In a broadcast today, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled what he stressed was a conditional plan for easing some COVID-19 restraints and restarting the British economy. Among many other elements the plan includes quarantines on arriving air travelers.

“To prevent re-infection from abroad,” said Johnson, “I am serving notice that it will soon be the time – with transmission significantly lower – to impose quarantine on people coming into this country by air.”

That set the alarm bells ringing at the U.K. Chamber of Shipping, which says it is urging the U.K. government to exempt seafarers and maritime workers from any quarantine restrictions and to provide industry with urgent clarification on the rules around the 14-day quarantine.

The chamber says that it has been involved in calls with ministers over the weekend and that, while it has been assured by government that seafarers will be exempt from the quarantine rule, it awaits urgent confirmation that this is the case.

UK Chamber of Shipping Chief Executive Bob Sanguinetti said:

“The UK shipping industry employs nearly 200,000 people and it is imperative the U.K, government avoids applying quarantine restrictions to seafarers and other maritime workers.

“If we want to ensure supply chains remain open, and essential goods including food, fuel, raw materials and vital medical supplies continue to flow into the country, it is vital that seafarers and maritime workers can move between countries without imposition. We urgently call on the government to provide the industry with clarity on this issue.”

You can read the transcript of the Prime Minister’s broadcast HERE

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