Updated: January 28, 2018

In the wake of a new International Scandal, chief Apologist for the Labor Administration in Dominica, Anthony Astaphan,  was working the spin-machine. Here, we refer to the recent complaint launched by Japan to the UN Security Council of a Dominican flagged tanker violating UN resolutions 2375 and 2397 that enforces sanctions against North Korea. The culprit vessel, Yuk Tung, was reportedly registered by Dominica Maritime Registry Inc (DMRI).

The DMRI parent company is based in Fairhaven, Massachusetts and registers vessels under flag of convenience protocol. The original agreement to establish DMRI was signed by the UWP administration in 1999. So, Mr. Astaphan is blaming the past administration for this developing scandal. No mention is made of the fact that Dominica Maritime Act, the enabling legislation, was passed in 2000 by the then Labor Administration and updated by them in 2002. The island could have exited any unfavorable contract that was not serving its interest. 

According to the 'Official Guide to Ship & Yacht Registries, OGSR,  'the commonwealth’s Ministry of Finance operates its 'International Ship Registry' and an International Business Unit charged with diversifying the economy, expanding the economic base, and generating employment' in Dominica. Is the DMR (Greece) LLC that 'International Business Unit? Or, are there 2 units at that Office.  There is no mention of this new, somewhat shady entity Dominica Maritime Registry (Greece) LLC [DMR (Greece) LLC] by Mr. Astaphan. When did Marine Services fall under the Ministry of Finance in Dominica?  At DMR (Greece) LLC website you will able to see where all their Sales Offices are located. They are all over the world. Dubai, Lebanon, Japan, Germany just to name a few. This company is also involved with other business dealings. For example, it is part of  CC Bulk Carriers, a shipping investment management company and Global Money Consultants, a financial consulting group.  Exactly, what is the purpose of DMR (Greece) LLC,  a  corporation that is a limited liability Company?  Who are the partners?  Are there any Dominicans involved?  Any relationship to the PM Skerrit's hastily arranged 'working visit to Greece in January 2017, accompanied by non-resident Ambassador,  Lennox Lawrence'? The answers are not known at this time. 

However, as the UN addresses another violation by a Dominican flagged vessel (the first being Dominican-flagged vessels violating Iran sanctions), the world may get answers. At present, DMRI in Fairhaven, MA is complicit as they have either not answered inquires or are dodging the International Press Corp!

For further discussion see earlier blogpost Dominica's Maritime Black Hole.

This an on going story; check back for future updates.