Marine Masters gets salvage contract for grounded chemical tanker off Goa

The State government of Goa in India has selected Netherlands-based salvage company Marine Masters to salvage chemical tanker Nu-Shi Nalini (IMO 9619608) which ran aground off Dona Paula at Goa in late October.

Marine Masters which was one of only two companies that had submitted bids to undertake the salvage work, a contract worth $3.4m. Then the other submitter, Smit Salvage, withdrew its bid on November 12th, according to media reports.

The State government had asked three companies to bid, but India based Resolve Salvage and Fire did not submit.

Nu-Shi Nalini hit trouble in adverse weather conditions caused by Cyclone Kyarr, causing the vessel to drift from her anchorage off the Port of Mormugao until it ended up aground near Dona Paula. The tanker was reportedly loaded with 3,000 metric tons of naphtha.

The salvage operation was set to take 30 days, with the offloading of the naphtha expected to take 10 to 12 days.

It took nearly three weeks after Nu Shi Nalini ran aground for the salvage contract to be awarded. Local bureaucracy slowed salvage operations, with officials at various authorities, including the local state administration, at the beginning appearing to be reluctant to accept that the incident was in any way their responsibility. This delayed a decision on who would implement the salvage operations and how. The Union Ministry of Shipping passed responsibility to the Directorate General of Shipping, where two technical expert officials were deputed to take charge of salvage operations. The contract was to have been decided by a five-member committee constituted by DG shipping, which included Goa chief secretary Parimal Rai. A recommendation would have been made to the Union ministry, which would have had final approval. However, Marine Masters ended up as the only player in the game, which at least accelerated the decisions required of the various parties before the contract could be awarded.

2012-built, India-flagged, 11,246 gt Nu Shi Nalini is owned by Arya Ship Charterers Pvt Ltd care of manager Elektrans Shipping Pvt Ltd of Mumbai, India.