the podcast

August 05, 2020
Polys Hajioannou, Safe Bulkers CEO - One of the First Major Shipowners to Publicly Call Out Charterers For Indifference To Crew's Plight

One of the first major shipowners to publicly call out charterers for indifference to crew’s plight
Until now, discussions on crews' plight on board has been on the lack of cooperation from govts, port authorities and int'l airlines. But the CEO of NYSE listed, Cyprus-based Safe Bulkers, sheds the spotlight on another major stakeholder – the charterers.
During the company’s Q2 2020 conference call, Mr. Hajioannou pointed out many charterers, including major ones, refuse even small deviations from scheduled routes, when nearby port calls could help with long overdue crew changes and would be at owner's cost.
“I have seen only 2 or 3 charterers really understanding the problem and co-operating,” he said. “Good names like Cargill or Bunge, they are doing their best to assist.. Other names we are really disappointed in."
Major charterers cannot claim how much they care about the crews when they care more about cargo delivery than this humanitarian crisis. “I think there is a lot of hypocrisy. ..this is a time bomb for the shipping industry. It will explode one day, and it will hit all of us.