The charter of the 600-passenger Astor which sailed from Tilbury on November 5 en route to Australia for its second summer season is not affected by the insolvency of its owner, Munich-based Premicon Hochseeschiff GmbH & Co. KG MS Astor.
Last night the company issued a statement that it had declared insolvency and that a managing director has been appointed.
However, Christian Verhounig, chairman and ceo of UK-based Cruise & Maritime Voyages, the charterer of Astor, said today that while restructuring plans are currently taking place the operation of the ship is secure.
‘The liquidation concerns the ownership company of Astor and has no ramifications for Cruise & Maritime Voyages or Astor which is under a long-term bareboat charter to CMV,’ Verhounig said.
‘Before the owners applied for insolvency, extensive discussions took place and part of the proceeding is that CMV has the use of the vessel.
‘The reason for this announcement is to ensure our travel partners and guests that the cruises are secured for Astor’s Australian season.
‘CMV is not affected by the problems of the vessel’s owner and we, together with our mother company, Global Maritime Group, are in full control of the vessel and therefore the vessel will be operating her Australian season as scheduled.’
Astor is due to arrive in Fremantle on December 13 via Lisbon, Tenerife, Ascension Island, Cape Town, Durban, Reunion and Mauritius.
Its Australian cruise season goes through until March 2015.
‘We as Global Maritime Group/CMV are in very close discussions with the owner’s management and the courts to find a quick and long-term solution for the vessel,’ Verhounig said.
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