A bulk carrier named ‘Hippo Spirit’ loaded with rejected Chinese fertilizer from a company called Qingdao Seawin Biotech Group Co., Ltd was refused entry to the port of Colombo. Despite the refusal to permit the vessel to enter the port, the Hippo Spirit is moving close to the port, NewsFirst (SL) reported.
Colombo Port’s Harbour Master has reported that the ship will be reaching the port for Supplies Replenishment. Documents observed by News 1st show that the Hippo Spirit is seeking to restore its vegetable stock.
The Chinese Embassy of Sri Lanka said that Ceylon Fertilizer Company had received the samples on 28 July. So, the National Plant Quarantine Service (NPQS) should have conducted necessary tests before confirming the bid followed by signing a contract and giving an import permit.
Sri Lanka’s State Fertilizer Companies that had placed an order for the Chinese fertilizer has reportedly informed newsfirst.lk that the samples specified by the Chinese Embassy had not been received by the country in an official capacity.
They stated that per protocol, 10 fertilizer samples with a weight of 1 kg each ideally must have been delivered to Sri Lanka. This would help Sri Lanka test those. But, Qingdao Seawin Biotech Group Co., Ltd had sent 500g only for tests.
The State Fertilizer Companies added that when Qingdao Seawin Biotech Group Co. Ltd was told about the inspection results, the local agent of the Chinese manufacturing company went ahead with police assurance. It also presented a sample. This was the third time the Chinese company did so.
The State Fertilizer Companies, however, reportedly stated that by the time the Chinese fertilizer samples had been handed over, Qingdao Seawin Biotech Group Co., Ltd had already employed the vessel, Hippo Spirit, with a consignment for Sri Lanka.
But the vessel had been diverted toward Singapore after deadly bacteria had been identified in the samples of the Chinese fertilizer.
The Hippo Spirit vessel, however, did not turn back. It set sail for Singapore stating that it would be reaching Colombo Port.
Data readily available online reflects that on 24 October, the Hippo Spirit was in Hambantota. However, the name was reflected as Seiyo Explorer.
The Seiyo Explorer and the Hippo Spirit share identical IMO numbers. Thus, it can be concluded that both are the same.
Chinese Organic Fertilizer manufacturing major, Qingdao Seawin Biotech, has declared that it has the right to seek legal actions against the company issuing test reports, violating scientific test results. It can take action against the media as it falsely disseminates test results.
The company states that the National Plant Quarantine Service and media officials have reported that the products contain Erwinia. This statement is not compatible with facts, and that it is smear behavior.
It added that the lethal condition of Erwinia is 45-50℃. It can easily be eliminated in 10 minutes.