Greek aframax DELTA PIONEER arrested in Primorsk, victim of corruption

What looked like more or less trivial accident, turned into a major force-majeure for a Greek owner of aframax DELTA PIONEER, which is to be arrested, after Russian Commercial Court decision on Primorsk Port operator, Transneft – Port Primorsk Co. claim. Transneft is claiming a major damage to a pier, which may disrupt Russian oil exports from Baltic Region. Transneft estimates damages at a whooping $54,000,000 sum, but there’s no available report with description of those damages, virtually no proofs, except claiming this astounding figure. Here are initial news:

Aframax DELTA PIONEER allided with berth, Primorsk
Aframax DELTA PIONEER allided with dolphin No.6 of Berth 1 in Primorsk Port, Russia, Gulf of Finland, on Nov 20, during mooring operation. Stern towing line given to tanker from tug RN POSEIDON broke up, causing allision. Two sections of berth catwalk damaged, tanker reportedly didn’t suffer damages.

Latest experts’ analysis confirm initial news, according to which DELTA PIONEER is not to be blamed for accident, it was tug’s fault, whose tow line broke up. Why then, DELTA PIONEER was detained, and now, arrested? The answer lies in an ownership of a culprit, the tug. Tug belongs to Rosnefteflot Company, whose activities already became scandalous, especially in Primorsk Port. Company and its’ fleet were found to be not qualified enough to operate tugs in demanding conditions of Primorsk Port, but nevertheless, company is working in Port, already causing problems – quite recently, port’s operations were suspended for some 24 hours, port was blocked by a tanker, escorted by Rosnefteflot tugs. Company is rumored to be connected to a notorious person, Mr. Victor Olerskiy, head of Russian Merchant Marine and River Fleet Agency, deputy minister of Russian Transport Ministry. He’s well-known person for anything but greed and corruption, and generally, he’s greatly disliked by Russian shipping community, with heaps of compromising materials, available in the web.
He, of course, is a staunch supporter of Mr. Putin and ruling regime. There’s no other way in nowadays Russia to be a successful corruptionist, except being Mr. Putin’s supporter (and curiously, Mr. Trump’s also), and vehement patriot of Mother Russia. Mr. Olerskiy’s specials interest in Rosnefteflot success explains the whole story – how and why apparently innocent multi-million vessel may be detained and arrested, turning the whole story into a case of what I qualify as “a State-backed piracy”.

Voytenko Mikhail
December 13, 2016

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