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4 April 2019

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The 2010 built High Speed Craft (HSC) JEAN DE LA VALETTE will be chartered to NIDCO from Vir­tu Fer­ries for a one year for service in Trinidad and Tobago, a dual island Caribbean nation near Venezuela.

According to The Trinidad and Tobago Guardian,  the pro­pos­al for the charter of the High Speed Craft JEAN DE LA VALETTE as a tem­po­rary inter is­land fer­ry to ease up the transport woes, is al­ready be­fore the local Cab­i­net.

Trans­port Min­is­ter Ro­han Sinanan was quoted as saying that the ves­sel is sched­uled to ar­rive by the end of May, and will re­place an ageing ferry boat un­til the two new ves­sels from In­cat and Austal ar­rive to per­ma­nent­ly ser­vice the seabridge in 2020.

Na­tion­al In­fra­struc­ture De­vel­op­ment Com­pa­ny of T&T (Nid­co) chair­man Her­bert George con­firmed that Nid­co had rec­om­mend­ed the temporary lease of the catamaran sourced from Mal­ta, to ser­vice the seabridge be­tween Trinidad and To­ba­go and the is­sue was still be­fore Cab­i­net.

Nidco said that the sub­mis­sion from Vir­tu Fer­ries was chosen the best in terms of age of ves­sel, speed and pay­load RoPax (roll on/roll off pas­sen­ger) ca­pac­i­ty.

The catamaran , once in Trinidad and Tobago, will be main­tained and crewed by Virtu Ferries and she will still be homeported at Valletta, Malta.

Vir­tu Fer­ries has quot­ed their dai­ly char­ter rate in terms of a 12-hour work day, be­yond which over­time pay­ments will ac­crue. We sought clarifi­ca­tion on this ba­sis of charg­ing, since the present sched­ul­ing of the seabridge will re­sult in a longer than 12-hour work day for the crew,” the Nid­co let­ter stat­ed.

“The time char­ter­er will work with Vir­tu Fer­ries to ho­n­our the 12-hour work day and is as­sured by Vir­tu Fer­ries of its flex­i­bil­i­ty and cooperation.” She has an up­per deck that pro­vides gen­er­al ac­com­mo­da­tion to 680 of the 800 au­tho­rised pas­sen­ger car­ry­ing ca­pac­i­ty. The re­main­ing 120 pas­sen­gers can be ac­com­mo­dat­ed in the up­per bridge deck.

Virtu Ferries operates daily service to Sicily …Visit for more details – www.virtuferries.com

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