Norwegian Kongsberg involuntarily supplied Myanmar navy ship

Kongsberg Maritime KM Amundsen Spirit Dynamic Positioning DP. Photo: Kongsberg

A Singaporean court fined the supplying company Hydronav and two of its employees on 19 September 2023 for exporting a sonar system to a Burmese navy vessel in 2018 without permit.

The two employees bought equipment from the Norwegian technology supplier Kongsberg, and exported it to a warship in Myanmar. But the employees lied to the Norwegian company.

They admitted that they submitted false documents, letting Kongsberg believe the equipment was for an Indonesian company. But then they sold it to a Myanmar entity to be used by the Myanmar Navy Hydrographic Centre.

A sale which later preceded a military coup in the country – and overthrew the democratically elected government at the time. And a procedure which is not aligned with the Norwegian company.

The rules are there for a reason

“Any sale or supply to customers in Russia, Iran, North Korea, Burma/Myanmar, Syria and Libya is prohibited,” Kongsberg writes on their main website page.

“The exportation, re-exportation, sale or supply, directly or indirectly, of Simrad Commercial Fishery items and software in the fishery segment to a military (naval) or governmental end-user in a country that is sanctioned or under restrictive measures by Norway, is not permitted without prior authorization by Kongsberg Maritime’s head office.”

Wui Ong Chuan, one of the two pleaded guilty, was fined US$33,000, while the other, Poiter Agus Kentjana,  was fined US$26.660. Hydronav was fined US$828,618 by the court for exporting the sonar system and a drone used for surveying to Myanmar.

Source: APF through Barron’s

About Sofie Rønnelund

Sofie Roennelund is a journalist working with ScandAsia at the headquarters in Bangkok.

View all posts by Sofie Rønnelund

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