Due to the increase of COVID-19 infections in China, crew disembarking or taking shore leave at Korean ports from vessels whose last port of call was in China must undergo a PCR test and quarantine for one day.
A negative PCR test result is also required before a seafarer can disembark the vessel. The testing requirement only applies to vessels coming from ports in China.
For vessels that have sailed from other countries, the PCR test is not required.
This new regulation became effective on 2 January.
On the other hand, China confirmed significant changes to its COVID-19 policies, regarding crew on commercial ships and crew changes as well.
More specifically, after three years of a strict no COVID policy, China continues its steps to relax travel bands, requirements for quarantine, and tests, despite a new surge in a variant in parts of the country.
As a matter of fact, on January 8 the country reopened its borders for international travel, and people entering the country are no longer required to quarantine but must still provide proof of a negative PCR test done at least 48 hours before their travel.
Regarding shipping, government agencies confirmed that crews from foreign flagged ships are included in the relaxed restrictions. The rules for crew changes reverted mostly to pre-pandemic dropping the requirement for local approvals and testing for all crewmembers.
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