Sri Lanka’s Colombo port to provide crew change services in Coronavirus crisis
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’ Colombo port is providing crew change service to ships plying the Indian Ocean at a time when many ports are closed, leading to new business being developed, an official said.
Colombo Port has been fully operational during the Coronavirus crisis and no ship had been delayed Sri Lanka Ports Authority Chairman Daya Ratnayake said.
“As a result of this, the brand name we got as a port, the credibility that we developed is now turning…into new business opportunities,” Ratnayake told an online forum organized by Sri Lanka’s National Chamber of Commerce.
Colombo had seen a 2.4 percent rise in ship calls before global shipping started to decline, he said.
Crew change is one of the services that the port is building,
Crew change services will also provide business for hotels, he said.
“We have a demand for 2,500 people transferring form a month,” he said. “They will have to stay in a a quarantine or an isolation a hotel at least for two days.”
Crew change service are also providing business from Sri Lanka’s airports.
The first aircraft with 224 seafarers had landed in Mattala Airport to be taken to a ship docked at Galle Port. More are expected.
Colombo Port has also started hiring out space to store containers to shipping lines.
Sri Lanka has been aggressively contact tracing Coronavirus cases and has contained most of the clusters that developed from index cases. (Colombo/Mar16/2020)