This is the second time that the Port of Singapore has received the award, the first time in 2021.

In addition, the Port of Singapore was also named “Best Seaport in Asia” for the 34th time.

These awards recognise the contributions by the Port of Singapore to support global supply chains and its leadership in driving maritime transformation.

As a leading international maritime centre and the world’s busiest transhipment port, the Port of Singapore will continue to play our part to keep supply chains going as the global economy recovers from COVID-19,” said Teo Eng Dih, Chief Executive of Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore.

“We are humbled by the affirmation from industry and thank our tripartite partners for their strong support. We will continue to uphold high service standards and drive initiatives that enable Singapore to be a more vibrant, digital and sustainable port.”

The annual AFLAS Awards is organised by freight and logistics publication, Asia Cargo News, to honour leading service providers in the supply chain community for demonstrating leadership as well as consistency in service quality, innovation, customer relationship management and reliability.

Winners were determined by votes cast by readers of the publication and announced on 7 September.

In July, Singapore secured the top spot once again in the Xinhua-Baltic International Shipping Centre Development Index Report.

It was the ninth consecutive year that the report – published jointly by Chinese state news agency, Xinhua, and global maritime data provider, the Baltic Exchange – ranked Singapore as the global leading maritime centre.



CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


Van Ameyde Marine, the global marine consultancy and surveying firm, is advising ship managers to remain Covid aware and ensure that crews are fully vaccinated amid the prospect of a further wave of infections from a new strain of the virus.

Michael Robertson, a senior marine consultant with the company’s McAuslands division, said: “With reports in Europe and Asia pointing to an increase in the number of Covid cases, ship managers and crews should not let their guard down. If there is another wave this winter, we could see ships and crews quarantined again and trade disrupted. There are reports of a new strain of the virus emerging in China, so I don’t think Covid is going away any time soon.”

While a Covid infection may be less severe for a fully vaccinated individual, Van Ameyde McAuslands’ crew care team is concerned that some seafarers have yet to receive their booster jabs.

“In the UK, we have seen an increase in vaccinations to keep boosters up to date but, in general, seafarers are not as vaccinated as well as perhaps they should have been. Some seagoers would certainly have missed getting their boosters in the time frame required for them to be effective,” said Robertson.

Charlotte Malkin, Crew Care Coordinator, Van Ameyde McAuslands, said: “While Neptune Declaration statistics point to a seafarer vaccination rate of 89.3%, which is probably an over estimation, we are finding that some crew members have only had one or two of the doses and missed boosters when they were at sea. We’re arranging a lot of vaccinations and tests at the moment.”

While travel entry requirements for many countries have eased, the crew welfare team is arranging more and more in Antigen tests arranged for crews at airports, with results sent directly to the ship manger and individual within 30 minutes.

“When travelling to Asia, a PCR test is still a travel entry requirement. We continue to carry out PCRs for crews travelling back home to the Philippines, for example. Chinese Embassy approved PCRs are also required if vessels are scheduled to visit Chinese ports or if crews are flying back home from China,” said Malkin.

If tested positive, Van Ameyde McAuslands places the seafarer under quarantine at an approved hotel, providing welfare support and carrying out tests at regular intervals. If symptoms persist or advance the crew care team transports the individual to hospital.

The marine consultancy is also advising ship operators to keep managers and crews abreast of the rapidly developing monkeypox situation and how to mitigate against the risk of infection.

“We are keeping a fairly close eye on the implications of the monkeypox outbreak, which is now shown to be transmissible by touch at a certain point in the incubation period. P&I Club clients are already issuing advisories based on our recommendations,” said Robertson.

Katy Peters, Founder and CEO of 360 Health, a medical services provider that supports the Crew Care team with vaccination supplies, medical escorts and nursing support, said: “Similar to Covid-19, monkeypox infection is likely to bring on flu-like symptoms – fever, headaches etc. but the incubation period could be up to 21 days. A rash usually appears within one to five days after the onset of symptoms and this could be on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body, like hands, feet, chest, genitals or anus. The illness will typically last between 2-4 weeks.”

Van Ameyde Marine encourages crews to practice good and frequent handwashing and advises against close contact with anyone showing signs of extensive skin eruptions, blisters and rashes.

If seafarers do show signs of a mild monkeypox infection, they should take medication to manage symptoms. If they develop more severe symptoms, they should be isolated in a separate room to prevent the infection spreading to other crew members.  Social-distancing measures should be maintained with disposable gloves and face masks worn when in close proximity to an infected person.

Van Ameyde Marine also recommends crews to strop sweeping and vacuuming in infected areas to avoid disturbing virus particles. Infected bedding, clothing, and towelling should be carefully placed in plastic bags without shaking the items before carrying them to washing areas. Items should be boil washed at more than 60°C.

“Ship operators should advise their P&I Clubs immediately if they suspect they have a case on monkeypox on board one of their vessels,” said Robertson. “The Club can provide advice and guidance and instruct experts to assist as different ports will react differently to the presence of monkeypox on board a visiting vessel just as they do with Covid-19.”

The World Health Organization (WHO) has determined that the multi-country outbreak of monkeypox constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.



CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022


A recent study shows rapid relapse of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) symptoms following the administration of nirmatrelvir/ritonavir in adults, reports News Medical.

Nirmatrelvir inhibits the main protease (Mpro) of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and blocks viral replication. The antiviral drug markedly lowers disease severity in at-risk individuals.

The study and findings

The present study observed the relapse of COVID-19 symptoms and viral load after an early…


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022

During the webinar, Remote Inspections during COVID-19 and beyond, we learned from more than one hundred participants that safety is still a top challenge for industries like maritime, oil and gas, constructions, and many more.

In a poll we shared during the session, 41% of the voters claimed that one of the challenges they have experienced during Covid-19 regulations was safety concerns. Safety has always been a challenge for the maritime industry and Covid-19 brought new challenges to the…


CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022

As COVID-19-related guidance eases around the world, Royal Caribbean International has announced new protocols to more closely align with the broader travel industry. Starting Sept. 5, the cruise line will welcome all guests – unvaccinated and vaccinated – to sail

The new guidelines are:

  •  Unvaccinated guests can cruise with negative results from any commercially available test, including self-tests
  •  No testing is required for vaccinated guests sailing on cruises that are nine nights or less.
  • For all sailings, guests 5 years old and younger have no vaccine or testing requirements.
  • On sailings of 10-plus nights, guests – vaccinated or unvaccinated – must provide a negative test within three days of their sailing date.

Due to local regulations, sailings to or from Australia, Bermuda, Canada or Singapore still require guests to be vaccinated, the company said.



CREWEXPRESS STCW REST HOURS SOFTWARE - Paris and Tokyo MoU have announced that they will jointly launch a new Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) from 1st September 2022 to 30th November 2022

Virgin Voyages’ first cruise ship, the Scarlet Lady. completes its first year in service today.

After being delivered in early 2020, the 2,770-guest vessel saw its debut season postponed by over a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the entire cruise industry entering a global pause over the health emergency, the ship only received its first paying guests on August 6, 2021.

At the day, the Scarlet Lady departed Portsmouth, England, for a three-night ocean getaway.

Five additional UK sailings followed before the 140,000-ton vessel crossed the Atlantic for its inaugural season in the United States.

In September, the ship docked in New York City before arriving in Miami – it’s original homeport.

Over 18 months after the initial plans, the Scarlet Lady finally kicked off its inaugural voyage from PortMiami on October 6, 2021.

The vessel then started to offer a year-round program of four- and five-night cruises to the Caribbean and the Bahamas, with visits to Costa Maya, Amber Cove, Bimini and more.

Designed to reflect the sleek luxury of a yacht, the Scarlet Lady offers, according to Virgin, the intimate and elevated experience of a boutique hotel at sea.

An adults-only ship, it has over 20 dining venues, in addition to many entertainment options. One of the highlights is the vessel’s theater, known as The Red Room.

Considered a transformational multi-form showroom, the area can be used with four different configurations – a traditional Proscenium stage, an alley stage used in fashion shows, a dance flat-floor configuration and a reverse stage setup.

Another unique feature is The Manor, a two-story, 1970s-style nightclub inspired by Virgin’s heritage in the music business.

Following the Scarlet Lady, a second cruise ship – the Valiant Lady – entered service for Virgin Voyages in March 2022.

Two additional vessels – the Resilient Lady and the Brilliant Lady – are also set to debut for the brand in 2023.


Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings today announced revisions to its SailSAFE health and safety protocols for its Norwegian, Oceania and Regent brands.

Vaccinated guests aged 12 and over will no longer have any pre-cruise COVID-19 related protocols and unvaccinated guests may embark with a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours prior to departure, subject to local regulations.

According to a press release, this policy will go into effect across Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises for all sailings that commence on or after September 3, 2022.

Requirements may differ for guests traveling on voyages departing from or visiting destinations with specific local regulations, including but not limited to Canada, Greece and Bermuda.

The company said it continues to strongly recommend all guests be up to date on vaccination protocols and test at their convenience prior to travel.

“Our long-awaited revisions to our testing and vaccination requirements bring us closer in line with the rest of society, which has learned to adapt and live with COVID-19, and makes it simpler and easier for our loyal guests to cruise on our three best-in-class brands. Health and safety is our top priority and we will continue to modify our robust SailSAFE program as the public health environment evolves,” said Frank Del Rio, President and Chief Executive Officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. “The relaxation of protocols coupled with continued easing of travel restrictions and the reopening to cruise in more ports around the globe are meaningfully positive for our business as it reduces friction, expands the addressable cruise market, brings variety to itineraries and provides additional catalysts on the road to recovery.”

Key fleetwide protocols changes, subject to local regulations, effective September 3, 2022 include:

  • Vaccinated guests aged 12 and older will no longer have any pre-cruise COVID-19 related protocols
  • Unvaccinated guests, aged 12 and older, or those who cannot or decline to provide proof of vaccination, will need to present a negative medically administered PCR or Antigen COVID-19 test taken no more than 72 hours prior to boarding
  • Guests aged 11 and under will not be subject to vaccination requirements or testing protocols of any kind
  • Vaccinated guests must meet the generally-accepted definition of “fully vaccinated” based on the destination they are embarking and/or traveling to and must provide proof of vaccination


January – June volume levels have improved on last year’s figures, the port operator Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) announced 2 August.

READ: China to dominate world’s top 20 container ports

A wave of COVID-19 restrictions paralysed the city earlier this year.

Shanghai averaged a daily throughput that neared 140,000 TEU in July, recovering to the pre-pandemic levels.

New data from FourKites indicates that import and export ocean shipment volumes at Chinese ports have bounced back over the past weeks as COVID-19 lockdowns have eased.

Volume at the Port of Shanghai has increased since mid-May, with the 14-day average ocean shipment volume up 15 per cent compared to 12 March (the day before lockdowns went into effect) and up 36 per cent week-over-week for shipments, according to new findings by FourKites.

Ports across China moved a total of 142.3 million TEU over the first half of 2022, a 3 per cent year-on-year increase.

3 years after disembarking its last Saga Cruises guests, the 1981-built ship Saga Pearl II was sold for recycling in Turkey.

Tugs towed the 18,600 GT vessel from her lay-up moorings close to Piraeus (Athens, Greece) on Saturday, July 23, bringing to an end the aborted project that would have seen her converted into one of the largest private yachts in the world.

Saga Cruises had sold the vessel back in April 2019 to Aqua Explorer Holdings, an obscure BVI-registered company that immediately sent her to Greece and renamed her from Saga Pearl II to Pearl II.

Initial rumours about the future of the ship supposed further cruising under Greek ownership or service as a floating hotel. It quickly became known in the cruise sector that the company was controlled by Saudi Arabian interests, via Greek intermediaries, who planned to convert the Pearl II into a private yacht.

The super-yacht project did not progress as the vessel was delivered at the height of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s anti-corruption crackdown that saw the arrests of Saudi Arabian princes, ministers, and businessmen.

The Pearl II yacht was put back on the sales market just when COVID struck. The shutdown resulted in a purge of older vessels. 39 have been sold for scrap since the Coronavirus was first detected in the city of Wuhan (China).

Saga Pearl II cruise ship

The Pearl II ship was built for Hadag Cruises (Germany) as the Astor and went on with a varied career, sailing for different cruise ship operators (Safmarine, Deutsche Seerederei, Seetours, Transocean Cruises, Club Cruise).

Saga Cruises acquired the cruise ship in 2008, replacing her with a newbuild vessel just over a decade later.


In a surprising announcement, the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stated that its Covid 19 program for cruise ships is no longer in effect. Based on CDC recommendations, individual cruise lines will determine their own protocols for passengers. This is expected to increase traffic and breathe new life into the industry, which has been struggling to get back on its feet since the beginning of the pandemic, inferred from the jump in share prices of cruise stocks soon after the announcement.

Strict and elaborate protocols were placed on the vessels when sailing of cruises from US ports was resumed in the summer of 2021. At this time CDC warned of a high risk of infection and advised against cruise travel. The system was replaced by a voluntary and more lenient one in 2022, which all the cruise ships sailing from the US opted into. The newest approach is to transfer greater responsibility on the cruises with less oversight by government agencies.

Kristen Nordlund, a CDC spokesperson, has stated that they believe the cruise operators have access to the necessary tools to prevent and mitigate the spread of Covid 19. She also said that passengers are expected to do their own risk assessment as they would in other settings. However, the CDC website advises passengers to avoid cruising and undergo testing three days earlier and five days after a cruise. The CDC will continue to publish guidelines for cruise vessels, and the ships will also be required to abide by local requirements and agreements with ports.



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