testata inforMARE

30 September 2022 The on-line newspaper devoted to the world of transports 18:01 GMT+2

December 3, 2021

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IATA, ICS, IRU and ITF denounce that the hysterical reactions of the Governments to the Omicron variant risk collapsing a supply chain already on its knees

Platten: we will see a return to the peak of the 2020 of the crisis of the change of crews of ships

The activities of transport and distribution of goods are have been put under heavy pressure around the world by the consequences of the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has prompted governments to adopt initiatives and rules to reduce the mobility and with it the transmission of the virus. If any month ago the easing of restrictions had somewhat eased the negative impact on logistics, the propagation of the variant Omicron has again pushed governments to tighten measures to stop the contagion despite several days now the experts consider this variant to be much less dangerous, for example, than Delta variant that has also alarmed states for some months.

The reaction of many governments to the Omicron variant has convinced four leading world transport organisations - International Air Transport Association (IATA), International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), International Road Transport Union (IRU) and International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) - a urge them not to reintroduce restrictions at the borders which further restrict workers' freedom of movement transport.

IATA, ICS, IRU and ITF have shown that "the reactions The world leaders' instincts to the Omicron variant are subjecting transportation workers and the global supply chain to a higher risk of collapse." 'I workers in cross-border transport, including seafarers, the flight crew and drivers - explained the four associations - must be able to continue to carry out the own work and cross borders without prescriptions on excessively restrictive travel in order to keep you moving supply chains already in difficulty."

Transport sector associations have also expressed frustration because governments have refused to follow the indications expressed in September by world leaders with the aim of ensure the free and safe movement of transport, priority for transport workers in the context of vaccination campaigns, adopt travel and health protocols developed by the sector for seafarers, drivers and staff flight and approved by WHO, ILO, IMO and ICAO, create certificates and Globally harmonised vaccination procedures, digital and mutually recognized, and increase the global supply of vaccines.

"For our transport sectors, this seems to be the ground marmot day," noted the secretary-general of the ICS, Guy Platten, referring to the sayings about reliving circumstances already lived. "The legitimate and real fear - he explained - is that, unless an initiative is taken coordinated by world leaders, we will see a return at the peak of the 2020 crew change crisis when more than 400,000 seafarers had been affected by unnecessarily strict travel restrictions. In the last two years the our transport workers have worked tirelessly during the pandemic to keep the global supply chain moving and have reached a breaking point. December - warned Platten - it is traditionally a busy time for the seafarers returning home to their families and governments they owe them the opportunity to spend that period with their dear ones".

Similar considerations of the Director General of IATA on the effect of the new restrictions on the transport sector Airplane: Willie Walsh noted that border restrictions that prevent flight crew from doing their job have nothing to do with limiting the spread of variants of the virus that, when discovered - he pointed out - are already present all over the world, while instead - it has denounced - inflict "serious damage to global supply chains and local economies still recovering."

"The same governments that blocked global access to vaccines - noted the secretary general of the organization ITF union, Stephen Cotton - they are now the first to tighten their boundaries to keep out the Omicron variant. Rather than pursue a global solution to this pandemic, their decisions risk further collapsing the chain of supply. It's not just morally reprehensible - it has Highlighted Cotton - it is also an economic suicide. We we need universal access to vaccines now. It is imperative for all of us to tell governments to stop bowing before the large pharmaceutical industries and ensure that every country can produce the vaccines needed to end this pandemic."

The reaction of the Secretary-General of the IRU was also disheartened, Umberto de Pretto: "once again - he deplored - the Covid history is repeating itself, with governments that within a few hours unilaterally change hundreds of rules that concern cross-border transport workers. Truck drivers - denounced de Pretto - they are again caught in the middle and pay a hefty price simply to do their job in order to keep global supply chains running. They and all of us who rely on their service, deserve much better»."

PSA Genova Pra

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