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Turkey. Updates: Regime of cargo transportation in terms of COVID-19 pandemics as of 9 April 2020

09.04.2020

Information prepared by Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Turkey (09/04/2020) Subject: International Freight Transport

Because of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, border crossings through our borders with many countries has stopped and it is forbidden for many countries’ citizens entrance to our country is banned. 

But, by the circular notes it has been stated that relevant rules and regulations of the relevant necessary persons’ entry and exit, especially drivers, will determined under coordination with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Trade in order to maintain the continuity of the foreign trade.

Within this frame, except for Iran and Iraq borders have been closed for entry and exit except ( these borders will only be applicaple for foregin drivers to exit with the condition of no-return); for international trade aim, the vehicles and drivers that will enter/exit our country and the vehicles and drivers that will transit cross our country will be allowed to cross the borders in compliance with the following conditions.

A. TRANSIT VEHICLES AND DRIVERS FROM TURKEY

1. Within the scope of combating coronavirus, the vehicle driver's health check will be performed by the health units and the person / persons who have symptoms related to the disease will not be allowed to pass.

2. Entering vehicles will be subjected to a disinfection.

3. Drivers will be provided to wear masks at any point they may be in contact with other people during their domestic breaks, and to have a sufficient amount of masks, disinfectants and food for a long time.

4. Customs administrations will determine the routes and resting/parking areas for the vehicles that will be in transit, and they will be ensured to leave 36 hours from the farthest border gate and within 24 hours from other border gates by following all vehicles to transit through the “vehicle tracking system”. (These periods are; road condition, weather conditions, density situation in the customs office to depart, etc. can be extended up to 48 hours by the relevant customs administration, taking into account the work load of the customs Office of departure etc.).

5. Necessary health and safety measures will be taken by the relevant Governorship / District Governorates at the rest places to be determined by the customs administrations.

6. A written engagement will be taken at the entrance gates by the Ministry of Internal Affairs departments regarding the fact that they will not layover or wait, other than necessary, from the drivers who will be in transit from Turkey. If not, he will be informed that a penalty will be imposed under the General Sanitary Law.

7. Before the entry permit is granted, it will be ensured that the vehicles will be accepted by the country from which they will exit through our country, and if the vehicles are not accepted by the country of entry if they leave our country, the entry of these vehicles will not be approved.

B. ENTERANCE PROCEDURES FOR DRIVERS

1. The health condition checks of the drivers will be done by Health Authorities, if there are symptoms found related to the disease, Permission to enter to Turkish territory will not be provided to the driver (s)
2.Vehicles entering will be subjected to disinfection process.
3.It is compulsory for the drivers to wear masks at any point they maybe interaction with people at resting/parking spots, they have to keep enough masks, disinfectants and enough food stuff and beverages in their vehicles. If need be some escort procedures will be applied and compulsory resting and parking areas will be identified by the governmental authorities.

a) Drivers with Turkish Citizenship; After Medical Checks by Health Authorities, Turkish drivers will be allowed to enter if they sign a commitment which proves that they accept the rule for 14 days of quarantine at home. Information about the address and identity will be provided to the Provinces to enable the enforcement.

b) Drivers with Foreign Citizenship: Transport services will be delivered at isolated areas by exchange of drivers and/or trailer/goods, if this is not possible they have to complete 14 days quarantine rule and then will be allowed to enter Turkish territory.

c) Customs Authorities will consider road conditions, weather conditions, workload at the customs administration while maintaining the itinerary/routes, maximum transit time,  for Foreign drivers who will drop off a load in our country.  Health and safety measures required by the relevant Governorship / District Governorates will be taken on the resting/parking areas on their itinerary. A letter of undertaking will be taken by the Ministry of Internal Affairs regarding the fact that they will not stop and wait except essential cases. This undertaking will be signed by the foreign drivers and the content will be if the above mentioned obligations are not fulfilled he will be punished under the General Sanitary Law.

d) During the entrance of the foreign trucks/drivers which carry the goods such medicine, medical supplies and food supplies that bear urgency for our country; change of driver or trailer/load change, if this is not possible, can be allowed under condition of making relevant health examinations/checks and getting necessary protective measures without waiting 14 days of quarantine period.

e) Drivers with the nationality of Bulgaria, Azerbaijan, Nakhichevan and Georgia will be able to enter our country without waiting 14 days of quarantine period, after having necessary health checks at the determined isolated areas and the vehicles disinfected. Within this article, the drivers who will unload in our country, will be applied relevant articles of Part A of this Circular Note; Article 4 will be applied according to their itinerary.


C. DRIVERS EXISTING TURKEY

1. As per the Article 3 (a) under Section B, Turkish drivers will not be permitted to exit Turkey in case it is detected that they have not completed their home-quarantine period.

2. Turkish drivers will be asked to possess mask, disinfecting items, sufficient food for a long time; also will be warned to interact with people in country of destination and along the route by conforming to the social distance without physical contact, then to turn back without losing time after discharging/unloading the goods.

3. Regarding the exit of foreign drivers, compliance with the Circular Note will be checked out. In case of an infringement, units of the Ministry of Interior will take punitive measures and bar them from entering Turkey again.

D. CONDITIONS THAT SHALL BE APPLIED TO RORO VOYAGES

1. Within Ro-Ro transport, only trailer/container transport will be done, passenger and whole vehicle transport will not be allowed. In case of embarking of driver, (exceptionally) necessary situations that is confirmed by the Port Civil Administration, the whole rules stated in this circular letter will also be applied to them during entry / exit from country will be notified by the Port Civil Administration to the drivers.

2. The obligation of isolation of the drivers deemed appropriate to embarking of drivers according to Article 1 with  ferry crew and passengers, will be notified to the shipmaster and other associates by the Port Civil Administration.

3. Vehicles arrived to our country via RO-RO voyage, firstly the driver cabinet, will be disinfected before delivering to the drivers.

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Permanent Secretaritat of the IGC TRACECA