After its vow last month to provide vaccines to seafarers, InterManager has now managed to agree with Johnson & Johnson for 1m one-shot Covid-19 vaccine doses for seafarers.
Frustrated by the lack of progress and slow pace of international efforts, InterManager had vowed to work separately to obtain much-needed Covid-19 vaccines to protect the world’s seafarers.
Global organisations have talked their way round in circles and still we are no further forward in providing a vaccination programme for seafarers who are vital in ensuring that world trade and aid continues to be delivered
InterManager President Mark O’Neil declared.
Now, InterManager revealed that agreed with Johnson & Johnson for the provision of 1 million one-shot Covid-19 vaccine doses for seafarers at a reduced rate.
However, in order to receive the vaccines, InterManager must to work with a recognised governmental body, as the international law states. Nevertheless, InterManager’s attempts have not been successful so far.
Commenting on this development, Mr. O’Neil expressed his frustration, saying that he cannot understand why there is not ”a single government body to authorise this.” For this reason, he also urged all shipmanagers to use their contacts to find a suitable government body.
Mr. O’Neil also added that if this opportunity is missed then there is the possibility ”some vessels to come to a grinding halt because we don’t have vaccinated seafarers.”
The United Nations has designated seafarers as “essential workers” but so far only 58 countries have followed this directive and are prioritising seafarers to enable them to travel to and from vessels. In addition, vast numbers of seafarers originate from developing countries where the official rollout of vaccinations are hampered by the availability of vaccines, thus compounding the problem.