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The Financial Express

UNCTAD backs call to keep ships moving, ports open globally

FE Online Report | Published: March 25, 2020 17:58:11 | Updated: March 29, 2020 19:16:10


UNCTAD backs call to keep ships moving, ports open globally

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has extended its support to a call to keep maritime trade moving by allowing commercial ships’ continued access to ports worldwide.

Dr Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary-General of UNCTAD, extended the support on Wednesday in an opinion piece. The piece, titled “Coronavirus: Let's keep ships moving, ports open and cross-border trade flowing” has appeared at the web-portal of the UN agency.

“As the world battles the coronavirus pandemic, the global maritime transport industry is playing a critical role in the response,” he said.

“A call by the industry to all governments to keep maritime trade moving by allowing commercial ships continued access to ports worldwide and by facilitating the rapid changeover of ships’ crews should not go unheeded,” he added.

Last week, in a joint letter to heads of four UN agencies, International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITWD) urged to keep global ports open for calls by visiting commercial ships and facilitating crew changes and the movement of ships’ crews with as few obstacles as possible.

UNCTAD statistics showed that around 80.0 per cent of global trade is transported by commercial shipping, which moves the world’s food, energy and raw materials, as well as manufactured goods and components.

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