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Norway helps Russian ships with seafood transportation

Norwegian ships aid Russian seafood exports amid sanctions. NRK reports Norwegian vessel transferred 2,000 tons of fish from Russian ship in Svalbard.
norwegian vessels
The Norwegian Coast Guard and Norwegian Customs were checking when the Russian Belomorye loaded fish to the Norwegian Silver Copenhagen in a fjord in Svalbard. Credit: Kystvatnek
Norway helps Russian ships with seafood transportation

Norway is assisting Russian transport vessels in moving seafood from Russia to other countries following the implementation of sanctions, according to a report by Norwegian public broadcaster NRK.

According to NRK’s report, an incident in which a Russian cargo ship, Belomorye, was observed alongside a Norwegian vessel, Silver Copenhagen, owned by the Silver Sea company, in an uninhabited fjord in Svalbard.

Norwegian ships reportedly do not accept fish from Russian vessels, but in this case, 2,000 tons of frozen fish were being transferred to the Norwegian ship.

The Norwegian media outlet reports that this arrangement allows Russian fish to be delivered to Dutch ports via Norwegian vessels, albeit with a delay of several weeks.

“Such vessels can transport Russian seafood to other countries,” the report notes, adding that “Russian fish is not subject to EU sanctions, so Norway is not violating any restrictions or laws.”

The situation arose after the Netherlands banned Russian ships from docking due to espionage concerns. According to NRK, “Instead of them [Russian ships], Norwegian ships are now doing this.”

The report cites information from the Russian news agency Interfax, stating that “in 2023, the Netherlands received more than 130,000 tons of Russian seafood. This is more than in 2022.” It also mentions that “Russia increased fish exports by 12% in 2023, to 2.2 million tons.”

Tormod Bo Fossmark, Silver Sea’s general manager, addressed the company’s involvement, saying, “We have our own people who check that they [the Russians] do not violate sanctions rules when transporting goods to and from Russia.”

The article notes that Silver Sea had previously collaborated with the Russian company Norebo for 20 years and “stepped in for Russian Norebo when they were not allowed to go ashore in the Netherlands.”

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