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Regulation Amendments – Sea ports, cargo operations etc. 07 04 20

The Minister of Transport on 7 April 2020 released new regulations. The important clauses are summarised as follows below:

  1. Measures To Prevent And Combat The Spread Of COVID -19 In The Sea Ports:
    1. Section 5(4) All other cargo vessels will be allowed into all the sea ports for purposes of cargo works, replenishing fuel and provisions.
    2. Section 6(7)(a) The following ships are allowed: (í) Cargo working ships;
    3. Section 6(8) The following sea ports are open for purposes of handling cargo, refueling and ship supplies:

(i) Richards Bay;

(ii) Durban;

(iii) East London;

(iv) Coega;

(y) Port Elizabeth;

(vi) Mosselbay;

(vii) Cape Town;

(viii) Saldanha Bay.

  1. Cargo Operations And Air Freight Operations:
    1. Section 1. During the lockdown period, the transportation of the wines and any other fresh produce products at the sea ports and International Airports Designated as Port of Entry for export is allowed.
    2. Section 2. Agricultural Cargo is allowed to be transported to sea ports and International Airports Designated as Ports of Entry and exported to the relevant destination.
  2. Declaration Of Essential Services For Purposes Of COVID -19:
    1. Section (1) for the purposes of this directions, the following services are declared as critical jobs for essential services:
      • Employees responsible for issuing permits for vehicles carrying an abnormal load.

These Directives amend an earlier directive issued by the Minister of Transport on 26 March 2020. Section 7 in those directives dealt with the implementation of a reporting, tracing and monitoring system at sea ports.  It previously allowed the loading and off-loading of cargo in and out of commercial ports. In now also provides for cargo vessels to be allowed into port for cargo works and to replenish fuel and provisions.

Directions were also issued in terms of Regulation 11B(6)(a) and (b) of the lockdown regulations of 25 March, which deal with the closure of South Africa’s borders.  Regulation 6(a) provides that all borders are closed except for the transportation of fuel and essential goods.  The latest Directions now specifically allow not only the export of agricultural cargo, but also its transportation to harbours and airports. Specific mention is made of wine and fresh produces: the directives explicitly allow the transport of these goods to harbours and airports to be exported. There is no definition of agricultural cargo in the Directions or the Regulations.  Clearly something over and above just wines and fresh produce is envisaged.

The Directives also specify which sea ports are open.

Click here for the new transport regulations:  Transport gg43211 7 04 20