Havila Kystruten has received the necessary certificates from the Norwegian Maritime Directorate, which means that the coastal cruise ship Havila Capella is now fully insured and can restart operations along the Norwegian coast, the company said today.
The Havila Capella has been at berth in Bergen since April 12, when the insurance companies terminated their contracts on the ship due to the EU’s sanctions against the Russian-owned leasing company GTLK Asia.
According to Havila, the company has also been working on solutions to take over ownership of the ship. Among other things, it has filed a case to the High Court of England & Wales in London to force a change of ownership of the Capella. At the same time, the shipping company, through a petition to the Hordaland District Court on June 16, demanded temporary arrest and forced use to operate the ship.
The Hordaland District Court has upheld the company’s request.
“The Norwegian Maritime Directorate has now issued valid certificates for the Havila Capella to Havila Kystruten, which means that we have received valid P&I insurance with assistance from the insurance company Skuld,” Bent Martini, CEO, said in a prepared statement. “Over the next few days, we will seek to conclude the hull insurance for the ship, meaning the Havila Capella can resume operations from June 28, when she will embark on her next voyage along the Norwegian coast.
“It has been important for us to secure our values, and not least our greatest resource – our employees,” Martini continued. “We have always believed that we would find a solution and have chosen to keep everyone at work. We are pleased with that decision now. We have crew on board who have shown a great willingness to deal with a demanding situation, and who are now very much looking forward to showing off the best of the Norwegian coast to our guests.”
After the Havila Capella was hit by sanctions, the shipping company applied to The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs for a dispensation to operate the ship. This was granted on April 26, and gave Havila Kystruten the possibility to operate the ship for six months. At the same time, no clarification was given about dispensation concerning insurance of the ship. An application for exemption from insurance was rejected by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on May 9.
The company has sought to find solutions with the ministries to get Havila Capella back into operation, but this has not been successful.
Martini noted that working with the government, several ministries and top political leaders has been complicated and that the case was not given sufficient political priority.
“In that matter, it is very gratifying that we have come to a solution based on our own initiatives, in good cooperation with the Norwegian authorities including the Norwegian Maritime