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Rena owner settles up with government

Daina Shipping Company, owner of the MV Rena, has agreed to pay $27.6 million nearly a year on from the Rena's grounding on October 5, 2011, which triggered a major oil spill.

rena settlement reachedDaina Shipping Company, owner of the MV Rena, has agreed to pay $27.6 million nearly a year on from the Rena's grounding on October 5, 2011, which triggered a major oil spill.

Keith Manch, director of Maritime New Zealand, has confirmed that Daina will pay the sum toward the claims of the Crown and public bodies including Maritime NZ, Bay of Plenty District Health Board, Environmental Protection Agency, the minister of local government (signing as the territorial authority for Motiti Island), and the New Zealand Transport Agency.

Daina Shipping Company and The Swedish Club (the Rena’s insurers) are currently investigating the environmental, social, cultural and economic impacts of different options for dealing with the wreck.

Should they apply for, are granted, and use a resource consent to leave part of the wreck in place, Daina will make an additional payment of $10.4 million to the Crown, reflecting their reduced salvage costs.

"This was a very complex negotiation given the range of issues and parties involved, and represents a good outcome for New Zealanders," said Manch. "As with any settlement, it is about finding a solution that both sides can live with, and I would like to acknowledge the constructive approach taken by Daina Shipping Company and their continuing commitment to meet their obligations under New Zealand law."

Konstantinos Zacharatos, on behalf of Daina Shipping Company, said: "We have always sought to work closely with the New Zealand authorities to address all aspects of this serious incident. This settlement is a vital step forward in our progressive resolution of all the issues, and I want to thank the New Zealand authorities for all of their work that has gone into achieving this outcome."

PHOTO: NZ Defence Force, Wikimedia