Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Norway to Permit Quarantine-Free Entry for Crews on Passenger Ships

Crews on passenger ships wishing to enter Norway from a country considered highly affected by the virus will be exempted from the quarantine rule upon their arrival in the Scandinavian country, according to a statement published by the Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Industry.

However, they will be obliged to take a COVID-19 test upon their arrival. In addition, they will be required to undergo two other tests; on the third and seventh day of their arrival, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

Norway’s government believes that the quarantine requirement is very “unfortunate for crews on passenger ships” therefore, the Minister of Health and Care Services Bent Høie (H) has said that they are “introducing equal quarantine rules for this group with those that apply to aircraft and freight train personnel.”

‘To ensure the least possible infection on board, the shipping companies must make arrangements for the crew to avoid close contact with the passengers,” Minister Bent Høie (H) pointed out.

The statement clarifies that the new changes will be put in place on June 30, 2021.

The Minister of Trade and Industry Iselin Nybø (V) has stressed that the tourism industry has been profoundly affected by travel restrictions; therefore, the recently imposed decision aims to reopen the cruise industry between Norway and other countries.

“Passenger ships sailing under the Norwegian flag have had stricter requirements than similar players on land and in the air. We are doing something about this now, at the same time as we are working to avoid infection,”  the Minister pointed out.

According to Minister Nybø (V), the shipping company must ensure that people on board maintain at least one-meter distance from persons in another household; therefore, the passenger ships can only use up to 50 per cent of their passenger capacity.

Norwegian Minister of Trade and Industry Iselin Nybø highlighted that it is essential to treat foreign and Norwegian shipping companies equally.

In addition, the Minister added that the country’s authorities would make a new assessment of these rules in order to continue with the introduction of the fourth phase of the reopening plan, which aims to permit more people to enter its country.

Last week, Norway started issuing the EU COVID-19 Vaccination Passport, making entry easier for all persons who have been vaccinated against the virus.

In addition, earlier this month, authorities in Oslo revealed their third phase of the strategy for the gradual reopening of its border to EU/EEA countries and more categories of travellers to permit more persons from other countries to enter Norway, at the same time ensure that the Coronavirus situation is kept under control.

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