Tuna sales fall for Sanford after boat seizure


San Nikunau, tuna purse seiner. (Photo: intra.wcpfc.int)

Tuna sales fall for Sanford after boat seizure





NEW ZEALAND


Thursday, January 26, 2012, 04:00 (GMT + 9)

Sanford‘s revenues in the first three months of the fiscal year reflect the negative impact of the arrest of one of its ships in July for alleged pollution. The boat is moored since then and will go back to fishing in February.

The US charged Sanford with pollution, conspiracy and obstruction of justice for its San Nikunau tuna boat discharging oily bilge waste, and presenting false documents to the US Coast Guard (USCG) and American Samoan authorities.

The company had to pay a USD 1 million bond to have the ship released in December and is not allowed to resume fishing activities until 1 February. Until that time, the boat is tied up at Pago Pago.

In the first three months of the financial year starting in October 2011, Sanford’s sales fell by 5 per cent compared to the same period in 2010. Tuna sales were hit the hardest because of the situation with the San Nikunau.

”The San Nikunau was arrested, it was released under bond, and the company is facing some charges in the US going to court in Washington”, said managing director Eric Barratt, Fairfax NZ News reports.

”We’re actively defending the charges, we have a team of legal people working with us. It’s difficult to talk in too much detail because we can’t disclose what our defence is at this stage in the prosecution, so I can’t go into detail. But we are very confident we will defend our position”, he added.

Sales revenue for the 12 months to 30 September 2011 reached NZD 463.95 million (USD 375.6 million) compared to NZD 421.1 million (USD 340.9 million) the previous year. EBITDA reached NZD 49.2 million (USD 39.8 million) during that period against NZD 49.1 million (USD 39.7 million) a year earlier.

Barratt said the company expects its full year profit to climb.

Related article:

Sanford to get vessel back after paying USD 1 mln

By Natalia Real
editorial@fis.com
www.fis.com

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