With uncertainties due to increased border control measures and crew change restrictions brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) together with the Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union (SMOU) and the Singapore Organisation of Seamen jointly rolled out the Seafarers Relief Package to assist Singaporean seafarers during these difficult times.
The Seafarers Relief Package is part of the MaritimeSG Together Package worth S$27 million to provide relief and support to the maritime sector.
The Seafarers Relief Package aims to provide financial assistance to Singaporean seafarers if they are unable to secure shipboard employment between 1 May to 31 July 2020. Those eligible can receive up to S$800 per month as shown in the table below:
*who are working adults in place-and-train programmes for eventual full employment with their companies
1 May to 31 July 2020
Eligibility of seafarer:
Singaporean seafarers pending assignment due to COVID-19 from May to July 2020 (Terms and conditions apply)
As a union, SMOU is committed to safeguard the interest and well-being of seafaring officers. In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, MPA and the Young SMOU had an online engagement session with the young seafarers where they shared an overview of the SRP and the additional schemes such as the Achievement Award Scheme and other Government Support Schemes. The online engagement served as a unique platform for seafaring members who shared their hopes and concerns about their career.
“We hope that the Seafarers Relief Package will help soften the impact of this unprecedented situation by easing the financial burden that affects our seafarers,” said SMOU General Secretary Mary Liew. MPA Chief Executive Quah Ley Hoon added that “our seafarers are an asset to Maritime Singapore, and we should provide them with our support amidst this pandemic.”
During these challenging times, SMOU will continue to stand in solidarity and work with its tripartite partners to support seafarers during this COVID-19 period. Together, we can get through this!