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Asian importers to finally receive Maruba Simmons shipments

Asian importers to finally receive Maruba Simmons shipments

Rio de Janeiro: Asian and South African shippers breathed a collective sigh of relief when the Maruba Simmons, operated by Argentine carrier Maruba , finally set sail for Shanghai (via Durban), after being anchored outside Rio de Janeiro since December 18).

The 3,234teu German- flagged container ship departed from Rio de Janeiro on Monday, according to a senior source at the Argentine carrier and a Seatrade source in the Brazilian port city.

There have been some allegations that the Maruba Simmons had been held up in Rio de Janeiro owing to late payment of bunker fees and/or chartering fees to the vessel's German owner, Schiffahrts Gesellschaft.

Furious importers in South Africa and Asia have been waiting for almost two months for their consignments and some had expressed their discontent at the wait and accused Maruba of covering the "whole issue in a veil of secrecy" .

However, the Maruba source rebutted these allegations and told Seatrade: "Maruba Simmons was actually delayed in Brazil due to frustrated negotiations with owners, with the intention to make them agree with necessary technical improvements aiming to keep this ship competitive. Maruba did not accept to sail unless sufficient guarantees were in place. Unfortunately no agreement was reached on this for quite some time and she remained idle in Rio.

"We can confirm that she is now finally sailing from Brazil bound for Durban as major technical difficulties have been solved already on reasonable terms."
According to the Maruba source, the 1997-built Maruba Simmons was manoeuvred from outside the Rio de Janeiro shipping lanes, to Terminal 2 in the port (operated by Multi-Rio) last Saturday for hull cleaning services and then waited in Guanabara Bay for clearance to depart from the Brazilian pot authorities.

After calling at Durban she will then call at Port Kelang, Hong Kong, Busan, Shanghai, Ningbo, Chiwan, and then Port Kelang again before returning to Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and Argentina's Buenos Aires.  [17/02/10]