The former EUROPEAN SEAWAY, since renamed SEA ANATOLIA, has been resold, reports Ålands Sjöfart. The 1991-built ship has been purchased from Sea Lines for further service by the Honduran Blue Wave conglomerate.
SEA ANATOLIA will be renamed BLUE WAVE HORIZON and will serve a route between Caldera in Costa Rica and La Union in El Salvador. This service will cut out a 2000 km land journey through Nicaragua for companies moving goods between Costa Rica and El Salvador and beyond.
To link the two ports, the former Dover – Calais ferry will have to sail alongside the entirety of Nicaragua’s 352 km long Pacific coast as well as a significant amount of the Costa Rican Pacific coast. By contrast the Dover – Calais crossing takes 90 minutes with the point to point distance between the ports just 34 km. The vessel had previously sailed on the now-closed four hour Dover – Zeebrugge route.
P&O Ferries charter
P&O Ferries was among the companies also interested in the vessel and had made a formal offer to charter back their former EUROPEAN SEAWAY. However, with the purchase from Blue Wave on the table, Sealines declined P&O’s charter offer.
Given the access modifications made to SEA ANATOLIA to make her suitable for service outside Dover, it is highly unlikely that P&O Ferries would have used the vessel on her former Dover to Calais route. A large stern access ramp has been fitted during the three month long conversion meaning that the former EUROPEAN SEAWAY would no longer be able to load and discharge at Dover.
She may have been suitable for the Dublin – Liverpool service, which is currently down to a single ship while overhauls take place, however, or one of P&O’s North Sea freight routes.
Sea Lines had planned to use SEA ANATOLIA on a new Black Sea service from Constanza in Turkey, but the war in Ukraine means those plans are no longer feasible. As a result, following conversion work in Turkey the former EUROPEAN SEAWAY has spent a lengthy period tied up.