Cargo spill off Myconos prompts insurance queries


A minor cargo spill off the coast of Myconos before Christmas has prompted the Greek government to explore the obligations of shipowners and insurance companies in such incidents, Kathimerini understands.

The Panama-flagged Little Seyma had been en route to Cyprus’s Famagusta port from Russia with a load of 2,700 tons of animal feed on December 22 when it ran aground off the islet of Tragonissi near Myconos in the Aegean Sea, leaking some of its cargo.

On learning about the incident, the vessel’s insurer informed the Shipping Ministry that it had not been paid the insurance and that the vessel was thus not covered for the damages it caused.

The insurer ultimately agreed to cover the damage “on a voluntary basis,” but not without challenging a proposal by the head of Greece’s state port authority for vessels that cannot prove they have paid their insurance being prevented from sailing.

Legislation being prepared by the government will seek to enshrine the obligations of insurance companies, even in the case of foreign vessels transiting Greek waters, Kathimerini understands.