PPA: Ports to remain open but disembarkation ban still stands

Aileen Cerrudo

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) has announced that the Philippine ports will remain open to all ships even from those originating from China and its Special Administrative Regions (SARs).

This is to avoid disrupting the international cargo supply chain, according to the statement of the PPA.

However, the PPA said they will set parameters in order to lessen the threat of the novel coronavirus in the country.

“The only condition is the non-disembarkation of vessel crew and no visitors allowed while docked in any PPA-controlled port or at anchorage,” the PPA said.

PPA General Manager Jay Daniel R. Santiago said that majority of Philippine cargoes originate from hub ports located primarily in China and its SARs including Hong Kong and Taiwan.

“We cannot afford to ban the entry of international ships to our shores in the midst of this nCoV ARD scare as doing so will surely paralyze our supply chain as most of our imports and exports go to the hub ports located in China and its SARs,” he said.

“Instead, we are banning the disembarkation of the crew of any vessel which called in China or any of its SARs within the 14-day period prior to its arrival in any Philippine port,” he added.—AAC

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