Tugboat owner fined MVR 20m for damage to Dhiyaneru reef

Dhiyaneru lagoon.

The owner of the tugboat, AM Adway, has been fined by over MVR 20 million for damages to the Dhiyaneru reef located in K. Atoll.

AM Adway, and the barge that was accompanying it, Aaron, both wrecked on the Dhiyaneru reef on September 23, 2023.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had conducted a joint survey in collaboration with surveyors appointed by the owner of the vessels, Dubai-based Middle East Marine LLC, to assess the damage.

In an announcement published on the Government Gazette on Wednesday, EPA said the survey showed the barge did not cause any damage, while the tugboat damaged an 804-squaremeter area of the reef.

The EPA therefor fined Middle East Marine by MVR 20,246,600 for the damage under the Environmental Protection Act.

According to EPA, the company was instructed to pay the fine within 30 days.

The Dhiyaneru lagoon, located near Male’, was the location of a previously planned project to build a yacht marina. However, the plan was never implemented.