SAMOA’S MV QUEEN SALAMASINA SOLD TO FIJI’S PATTERSON BROTHERSSHIPPING

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SAMOA’S MV QUEEN SALAMASINA SOLD TO FIJI’S PATTERSON BROTHERS SHIPPING

APIA, Samoa (November 16, 1999 – Samoa Observer)---The government said goodbye to its 22-year-old inter-island ferry, the MV Queen Salamasina, yesterday. It has been sold for $T 230,000 (US$ 74,410) to a Fijian company, Patterson Brothers Shipping Co., Ltd, to which it is being ferried today.

The Queen Salamasina was replaced on its Apia-Pago Pago service by the MV Lady Naomi last December.

Queen Salamasina was built at the Dillingham Shipyard in Perth, Australia and was completed in January 1977. It was funded under the Australian Government Aid Assistance program at a cost of AUD$ 2.4million (US$ 1.53). The Government leased the ship to the Samoa Shipping Corporation to provide shipping services for the islands of Samoa.

The MV Queen Salamasina underwent major repairs in Nelson, New Zealand after Cyclone Ofa in 1990 at a cost of well over US$ 1.0 million.

The government and the Samoa Shipping Corporation successfully acquired the MV Lady Naomi under the Aid Assistance Program of the Government of Japan.

After the arrival of MV Lady Naomi in December 1998, MV Queen Salamasina ceased services. The ship was offered for sale and the Cabinet, on October 13, 1999, officially approved Patterson Brothers Shipping Co., Ltd.'s tender of $T 230,000 (US$ 74,410).

The ship's main service was the weekly trips between Apia and Pago Pago.

Apart from American Samoa, the ship also provided services in the past to the Tokelau Islands, Wallis & Futuna and Tonga.

The government said, "It is grateful to the government of Australia for the assistance in providing the MV Queen Salamasina.

"The ferry not only improved the inter island shipping service remarkably, but also was the backbone for the transportation sector between the Samoan Islands.

"For twenty two years it was the main shipping vehicle for exporters and importers between Samoa and American Samoa.

"In recent years it also has provided vital services to the Tokelau Islands."

For additional reports from the Samoa Observer, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/Samoa Observer.

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