Oil tanker refuses inspection, says Malaysian maritime agency

Crude oil tanker Silvana III (IMO 9183348) refused to allow an inspection by maritime authorities while she was anchored in Malaysian waters, Malaysia’s Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has said.

Silvana III’s commercial manager is Kunlun Shipping Co Ltd, which is one of several firms placed under US sanctions this year for alleged involvement in transporting oil from Iran.

The MMEA said that the Silvana III, which anchored off Kuala Kurau on Malaysia’s west coast on December 5th, did not follow instructions to drop its ladder to allow officers to conduct checks. “After several attempts to instruct the ship to drop ladder were not heeded, the ship lifted anchor and left the location”, said MMEA on its Facebook page on Monday, adding that a police report was filed against the vessel for dropping anchor without approval. The tanker would be detained if found, MMEA said.

MMEA did not refer to the vessel’s ownership or management and made no mention of US sanctions.

Reuters said that it requested details on Wednesday, following which the post on MMEA’s Facebook page was taken down. An MMEA spokeswoman said the post was removed as the incident was under investigation, adding that no further details would be disclosed at this point.

According to ship tracking data on Refinitiv Eikon, the tanker went dark between November 30th and December 9th, Reuters said. The AIS transponder was back up on Wednesday December 11th, showing the ship turning towards Malaysia’s northwestern coast and sailing in the direction of the resort island of Langkawi.

The tanker changed its name to Silvana III from Tian Ma Zuo on November 1st

Kunlun was placed on the US sanctions list but Silvana Ltd was not listed.

1998-built, Panama-flagged, 149,376 gt Silvana III is owned by Silvana Ltd care of manager Kunlun Shipping Co of Shanghai, China. ISM manager is Cosco Shipping of Liaoning, China.