Sea Malta Company Limited was the Maltese National Shipping Line. Established on 10th November 1973 during the tenure of the Labour Government led by Dominic Mintoff, which had the majority of the shares in the new company. The quest of this company was to provide maritime services company as well as to the need of the nation in general, and to assist the Maltese industry.
During 1986 Sea Malta bought the Danish ro/ro MERCANDIAN TRANSPORTER II and renamed her as PINTO being registered on the Maltese Flag Registry on 3rd January 1987 with Official Number as 1676.
She was built in Denmark by Frederikshavn Vaerft A/S, Frederikshavn (Yard No. 376), for K/S Merc Scandia XXVI, (Per S. Henriksen, manager) with keel laid on 17th October 1977 as MERCANDIAN TRANSPORTER II of which she was launched the following year on the 18th February. In June she completed her sea trials and in July she was completed. In 1981 she was transferred to K/S Merc Scandia XXII, (same manager) and in 1984 she was renamed as TRANSPORTER II of which in 1986 she reverted back again to MERCANDIAN TRANSPORTER II. Later on she was sold to Sea Malta and started trading as PINTO introduced on Malta – Marseille – Livorno route.
After her first drydock she came out sporting her Sea Malta livery including white colour superstructure –
On the 3rd December 1998 she was sold to Yantai Ferry Company , China leaving Valletta on 19th February and arrived Hong Kong on 17th March of which was rebuilt into a ferry and renamed SHENG LU. On 17th October 1999 while she was underway from Dalian to Yantai a fire broke out with approx. 300 souls on board, sank with no casualties reported.
Watermarked Photos are by Capt. Lawrence Dalli otherwise stated. Do not use these images without my permission. © All rights reserved. Malta Ship Photos & Action Photos – www.maltashipphotos.com
Published – Sunday 14th November ,2021