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Dubai resumes crew changes; sees 3,000 in first two weeks

Despite countries and ports around the world increasing regulations on crew changes amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Dubai has seen crew change totalling 3,000 seafarers, with 1,700 seafarers signing on and 1,300 signing off, just two weeks after announcing its resumption.

The crew changes, overseen by the Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA), the government authority in charge of Dubai’s maritime sector, working alongside the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs – Dubai (GDRFA), have been hailed as an accomplishment at a time when other countries and ports remain hesitant to loosen restrictions.

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The DMCA announced that it has witnessed growth in marine activities, and that they were undertaken with the full compliance of safety guidelines from the Dubai Health Authority, having also confirmed flights from the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In spite of the large number of crew changes having already taken place, the DMCA added that it is still receiving a large volume of requests for crew changes of various nationalities.

Executive director of the DMCA, Sheikh Saeed bin Ahmed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, believes that the resumption of marine services such as crew changes reflects the faith that the marine sector has in Dubai’s ability to maintain high levels of safety for seafarers during this period, saying: “The resumption of the marine crew change operations comes from our constant efforts to guarantee the highest levels of health, safety and security of seafarers, visitors and workers within the maritime sector.

“The move has proved to be a strong boost to national efforts to revitalise the economic movement in the post-corona period, which prompts us to continue providing the necessary facilities for the return of marine activities while following strict precautionary measures that ensure the change of ship crew members and managing its operations are conducted with full efficiency, in line with Dubai’s leading position as one of the most competitive, safe, and attractive marine capitals in the world.”

Source: Seatrade Maritime

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