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 20 May 2020

Following the outbreak of the COVID-19 in December 2019 and the subsequent declaration by the World Health Organisation of the virus as a global pandemic, countries across the whole world have introduced various restrictions in an effort to combat the spread of the COVID-19.

The travel restrictions have invariably unfortunately impacted upon, inter alia, the cruise tourism industry as tourists have ceased travel. Consequently, multitudes of cruise liner ships which are used to ferry tourists across destinations around the world are now idling and seeking parking space.

Whereas this is unfortunate, the turn of events however presents an opportunity to the Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) to provide berthing/parking space for the empty cruise ships off our ports at designated points of anchorage.

Having conducted detailed reviews of procedures to be put in place in hosting the said ships, we have concluded that the move would neither contradict nor contravene any of the existing measures implemented nationally to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 suffice to say all existing COVID-19 mitigation

measures by the Ministry of Health and Social Services and Namport will be strictly complied with when dealing with such passenger vessels at anchorage.

The cruise liners will join offshore supply vessels and oil rigs which, as a result of the fall in oil prices, have also been recalled from the oil fields and are being safely stored at anchorage at the port of Walvis Bay.

We therefore kindly request and urge members of the public not to panic when they see these vessels at anchorage either and or off the ports of Lüderitz and Walvis Bay.

SOURCE: Namport