– The trawler Meløyvær is completed at the Smedvik Engineering Works in Tjørvåg, Norway. The ship is 55.03 metres long, 12 metres athwart and weighs 1479 tonnes. Today a similar newbuilt trawler costs about NKr 250,000,000.

– The Norwegian owners register its home port as Bergen. With its pistachio-green hull Meløyvær stands out from other trawlers. People in the trade think it looks a bit odd. Meløyvær fishes the Norwegian sea and the Arctic Ocean.



1980 – 1995

Meløyvær has its name changed, first to Thevik, then to Osvaldsson, then to Tromsbas and finally to Vima. The pistachio-green hull is painted black.




Vima is bought by the shipowners Brødrene Birkeland Fiskebåt­rederi. They already have two trawlers and fish for herring, capelin and hake in the Norwegian Sea and the Arctic Ocean. Vima gets a new home port at Storebø in Møre og Romsdal. The city name Bergen, embossed in relief on the hull and painted white, is painted over in black.




– Brødrene Birkeland Fiskebåtrederi sells Vima along with 36% of the shipping com­pany as a result of a generational change in the organization. The turnover of the company for this year is stated as NKr 54,000,000.




Vima is removed from the register of shipping in Norway. In the register it says that it has been transferred to the British Virgin Islands as a result of its sale to foreign owners. It is transferred without encumbrances. The new owners, Magnetic Co Ltd., are Rus­sian. The name of the ship remains the same, but is painted in Cyrillic characters – B3MA – in white over the Norwegian name, which is still embossed in relief on the hull.



2001 – 2004

– Data slightly uncertain. Vima fishes for a period in the Pacific.

– Activities in the Pacific are not profitable. Vima is transferred to a new home port in Murmansk to fish in the Arctic Ocean again.

– Between 2002 and 2004 the ship is in Norwegian waters and Norwegian harbours several times.




Vima calls at Kirkenes Harbour on 31/12. The agent during its stay is Arctic Total. Inadequate maintenance over the past few years has left the ship in poor condition, and the aim of the stay is at first repairs, later laying-up. The crew leave the ship and travel back to Murmansk.




– Kangamiut Seafood AS places an arrest on Vima for US$ 74,900 as well as court costs of NKr 7737. Kangamiut Seafood AS claim to have sent a series of reminders without results. The East Finnmark District Court finds for the plaintiff that “the execu­tion of the claim will be forfeited or made substantially difficult if the arrest is not permitted.” The court issues its ruling without preceding verbal negotiations. Vima is arrested on 12th February.

Vima is transferred to its new owners, Marine Technologies Ltd., also Russians.




– The ship is emptied of movables and valuables. Repeated requests from the Port Authority for the removal of the ship go unheeded. The port fees of NKr 1000 a day are not paid, nor are the costs of necessary environmental and safety measures.

Vima is removed from the Russian Maritime Register.




– The claim from South Varanger Municipality on the owners of Vima now amounts to NKr 6,035,805. The ship has also become an environmental threat to the harbour area in Kirkenes. On 14th September the Harbour Authority notify the owners that Vima will be sold or removed in accordance with the rules on direct removal in the Pollution Act and the Harbour and Waters Act. The owners are given a week to make good the debt and remove the ship itself.

– The day before the deadline for settlement expires, the harbourmaster in South Varanger receives a letter stating that Vima has been sold to the firm Kolskiy Proekt for c. NKr 600,000 (Rub 3,259,000). The letter refers to the sales contract of 1st Septem­ber, where it appears that the sale has been made free of encumbrances. One day later yet another Russian firm, North Invest, claims ownership of the ship.

– After the expiry of the deadline the harbour authority initiates a sales process with Fosen Gjenvinning AS, which will buy Vima for scrap. The price agreed is NKr 800,000, and the ship is prepared for tugging south.

– Kolskiy Proekt demands that the removal of Vima is stopped. They want to tug the ship to breakers in Murmansk. The East Finnmark District Court rejects the application.

– October: Vima is tugged south to be broken up in Fosen in Trøndelag. There it is sold as scrap for c. NKr 3.50 per kilo. The breakers believe that Vima could technically have been rehabilitated and used again, but that it would not be profitable because of the encumbrances on the ship.



Norsk Ordinært Skipsregister. (visited 14th March 2012).

“Fiskevernsonen ved Svalbard”, (visited 14th March 2012).

“3.3 Fiskevernsonen ved Svalbard”, Storting Report no. 30 (2004 – 2005) “Muligheter og utfordringer i nord”.

Egil Pettersen, “Russiske trålere dumpes i Norge”, (visited 14th March 2012).

Sten Inge Jørgensen, “- Overdreven dramatikk i nord”, Morgenbladet (21st October 2005).

STP – Transport. (visited 14th March 2012).

Fiskerimagasin 2004 (Storebø, 2004).

Jørgen Holten Jørgensen, Svalbard og Fiskevernsonen – Russiske persepsjoner etter den kalde krigen (Lysaker, 2003).

“Tråler til 250 millioner”, (visited 14th March 2012).

Case no. 05-020069TVA-OSFI, Kangamiut Seafood AS v. Magnetic Co Ltd., East Finnmark District Court.

Case no. 11-150720TVI-OSFI, Artem N. Bondareenko/Kolskiy Proekt v.  Kirkenes Harbour, South Varanger Municipality, East Finnmark District Court.