July 19, 2024
MARITIME: Abandoned Livestock Carrier to Be Auctioned by the Australian Court
– By Godswill Odiong

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By Our Correspondent
The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) has disclosed that a Livestock carrier, “Yangtze Fortune” has been arrested in Portland, Australia by the Australian Federal Court, according to FleetMon.

It stated: “The Australian Federal Court believes that the vessel has been abandoned by its owners and the court intends to auction it off to settle claims against it.

“The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) had been monitoring the situation since the vessel arrived in Portland, Australia on September 28. Later, Australasian Global Exports Pty issued a writ against the ship in Western Australia claiming damages of $2.3 million for a breach of a booking in September. Following this, Dan-Bunkering had the ship arrested for non-payment of bills and subsequently, Singapore Ship Chandlers also filed a writ against the ship.

“Before the arrest, the vessel was transporting a load of 5,200 head of cattle from Australia to China. The 4,800 dwt ship was sailing with a crew of 30. Following the arrest, The Admiralty Marshall of the Court purchased fuel for the ship and had a hole in the hull of the ship temporarily repaired. Meanwhile, the registered owner; Harmony Shipping of China has not responded to the court’s notices.

“The court has noted that the vessel’s marine hull and machinery insurance is set to expire on December 31st, 2022. If this happens, all the claimants will be at risk. The crew on board is unwilling to leave until their due wages are paid. The collective unpaid salaries of the crew alone stand at a quarter of a million dollars.

“Reflecting on the situation, the court has stated that it sees no recourse but to put the vessel up for auction. The Creditors to the company and the unpaid wages will be remunerated first after the sale of the ship. Hence there is a chance that there might not be enough for the crew to get paid, depending on the market. The court has directed Admiralty Marshall to proceed with the sale once the necessary paperwork has been filed by the plaintiffs.”

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