September 13th – Covid 19 Control

September 13th 2020

Covid 19 Control

In view of the ongoing developing situation and different communications and instructions being issued by Sanitary Authorities of the Argentine Government we have chosen to send a consolidated daily report at the closing of working hours with an update of the day’s news.

Recalada/Zona Comun Covid 19 Control: The Sanitary Authority and the CoastGuard have advised today that the preliminary Sanitary Control that was being performed on inbound vessels at Zona Comun will no longer take place. Reporting procedures will continue but the control performed on inbound vessel at Zona Comun will not be performed any longer. Unless there are special reasons all vessels will be controlled and granted Free Practique at the Roads of the designated load port. This preliminary control had been causing inbound vessels to suffer delays of about 24 hours and additional expenses for launch services that conveyed the inspectors.

Wheat 2020/21 harvest: The wheat harvest, due to commence during mid November is now forecast to be in the order of 20.6 million tons. On this basis exports are estimated to be about 11.8 million tons. Although the forecasts had been pessimistic the late rains had “saved” the day.

Petrobras Vitoria, Brazil: Petrobras have notified that they will cease the bunker delivery operations (Marine Fuel Oil and Marine Gasoil) at Vitoria ports, including Vila Velha, Praia Mole and Tubarão terminals, as from 22nd November 2020 onwards. This situation is due to the expiration of the current Tubarao’s terminal wharf hire contract, which is the loading point of the barges used to deliver the bunker products to vessels operating cargo in this area. The closure will happen due to the terminal landlord’s request, Vale. Petrobras will still supply bunker regularly in the other usual Brazilian ports, including those located at Rio de Janeiro and Bahia states, and will keep looking for alternative options to perform operations using technically safe and economically effective solutions.

Open loop scrubbers: The San Lorenzo Coast Guard have instructed that all vessels equipped with open loop scrubbers arriving in their jurisdiction be reported to them prior arrival.

Crew changes Argentina: The borders remain closed and crew changes are not permitted. There is talk at the moment that flights in and out of Argentina may be allowed as from early October. Soonest we have news on this we will advise you.

Crew changes Uruguay: On and Off signing crew are allowed entry into the country under very strict restrictions. On signers must have a prior negative Covid 19 test 72 hours prior being allowed entry. Crew members boarding are not allowed to stop at any stage between landing at the airport (Montevideo) and boarding the vessel. Once onboard the vessel they must comply with a 14 day quarantine onboard before being allowed to work. Departing crew must proceed directly from the vessel to the airport. Considering that there are at the moment few international flights these requirements make it very difficult for crew members to enter or leave the country. Additionally to this before a boarding crew member is allowed permit of entry the agreement of Sanitary Authority, Immigration and CoastGuard must be obtained.
The best way of achieving a successful crew change at Uruguay is to have the vessel do this OUTBOUND at Recalada/Montevideo anchorage when the vessel’s schedule is not bound so much by weather and port congestions.

Recalada: Recalada, and Zona Comun have closed due to swell, fog and high winds.

Necochea: The port has been open since September 03rd at 0730 hours. It had last closed on Saturday, August 29th at 1640 hours.

Necochea: All vessels arriving must comply with a 14 day quarantine. The 14 days are counted from the date of departure from the last foreign port of call, regardless of having Free Practique issued at a previous port of call in Argentina within the 14 day period.

Bahia Blanca: Pilotage service is suspended for short periods of time due to bad weather.

Bahia Blanca is imposing a 14 day quarantine on arriving vessels. This quarantine can be excepted if the terminal where the vessel will load produces proof that an earlier berthing is required. Also an agreement with the stevedores union that adequate precautionary measures will be taken to satisfy the workers attending onboard so as to avoid contagion.

Will keep you posted.

Best regards,
Antares Servicios Maritimos S.A.

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