Aberdeen Sheriff Court has ordered the sale of the India-owned platform support vessel Malaviya Seven, which has been detained in Aberdeen since June 2016 over unpaid wages to the ship’s crew.
The 12 crew members that remain onboard are said to be owed from August 2016 to date.
The order, confirmed to World Maritime News by ITF, comes a month after the sheriff ruled the crew had the right to sell the vessel to recoup their owed wages – agreed at USD 867,000 (£672,000). However, before the ship could be put up for sale the court ordered for an appraisal of the ship’s value to be conducted first.
ITF inspectors said this was unprecedented in their experience because the claim of the crew took priority.
According to the court, cited by BBC, there has already been an interest in the vessel, which will now be advertised for sale around the world.
The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) arrested the ship Malaviya Seven on Wednesday, March 29 on behalf of its crew.
The stranded crew members of the vessel, owned by India’s GOL Offshore which is undergoing liquidation, hope to receive their pay once the vessel is sold, enabling them to return home.
“ITF inspectors are in close daily contact with the crew, and are spearheading the legal case on their behalf. This court decision is in line with their expectations and the next step towards the aim of getting crews both paid what they’re owed and safely home with their families,” an ITF spokesperson told World Maritime News.
However, how much they recover will depend on how much the ship is sold for in today’s depressed market, as indicated by the UK Chamber of Shipping.
Malaviya Seven’s current market value stands at USD 1.19 million, while the ship’s demolition value is USD 930,000, VesselsValue’s data shows.