Star Canopus offloading Saharan phosphates in Hobart, Tasmania
See photographs of the vessel Star Canopus discharging phosphates from occupied Western Sahara in the port of Hobart, Tasmania, July 2010. Oddly, the ship was originally listed with a cargo of Zinc Concentrates. But that didn't appear to be the case.
The picture above shows the Star Canopus laden with phosphate rock from Bou Craa in Western Sahara arriving in Hobart Tasmania on Wednesday 14 July 2010.
Star Canopus seems to be owned by a firm called Pegasus Enterprise in Japan/Greece. The vessel has IMO number 9228124 and sails under Greek flag.
The pictures below show trucks from the firm Hazell Bros transporting the phosphate to be processed at the nearby plant of Impact Fertilisers Australia.
The Swiss-based firm, Ameropa and partner since 2006, has recently bought a majority interest in the Australian fertiliser company. A cash injection of $50 million will, they say, help provide stability given the volatile market in recent times, caused by drought and the global financial crisis.
On 16 July 2010, Star Canopus left the port in Hobart bound for Portland, Victoria with phosphate for Incitec Pivot to turn into superphosphate used extensively by Australian farmers mainly for pasture for sheep and cattle and to a limited extent for crops.
When arriving Hobart, it was first reported to the harbour authority that the vessel was to offload zinc concentrates, but from what WSRW understands, that is incorrect. The vessel contained the remainder part of the phosphate rock cargo from occupied Western Sahara.
Morocco occupies the major part of its neighbouring country, Western Sahara. Entering into business deals with Moroccan companies or authorities in the occupied territories gives an impression of political legitimacy to the occupation. It also gives job opportunities to Moroccan settlers and income to the Moroccan government. Western Sahara Resource Watch demands foreign companies leave Western Sahara until a solution to the conflict is found.
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