The UK Department for Transport announced that all seafarers, irrespective of nationality, will be exempted from Red List country restrictions, most notably mandatory hotel quarantine, with effect from 19 March 2021.
In light of the situation, Nautilus International and the International Chamber of Shipping issued a joint letter, urging UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, to exempt seafarers from quarantine when returning to the UK from ‘red list’ countries.
According to UK Department for Transport, from now on seafarers who have been in Red List countries in the 10 days preceding their arrival in the UK will be able to enter the UK to join their ships, take shore leave and/or return home without the need to spend 10 days in managed quarantine or be tested for Covid-19 after their arrival.
Following the above, UK Chamber of Shipping Policy Director Tim Springett said:
The change represents a significant win for the Chamber, which has lobbied both the UK and Scottish Governments for seafarers to be exempted from the restrictions. Seafarers remain exempted from other restrictions on persons arriving in the UK, including quarantine and testing requirements. We are delighted to have helped secure this exemption. Seafarers are key workers and play a vital role keeping trade flowing.
Concluding, the government has also announced Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores) and Mauritius will be removed from the Red List and the Scottish Acute List, whilst Ethiopia, Oman, Somalia and Qatar will be added to it.