Helsinki Shipyard is planning to auction a cruise ship newbuilding it has just completed for Swan Hellenic.

The recently relaunched cruise operator is playing down the move, claiming the tender sale for the 10,700-gt polar class cruise ship SH Vega (built 2022) is part of a process required to extricate the ship from a leasing deal with sanctioned Russian state-owned lessor GTLK.

In a statement to TradeWinds, Cyprus-based Swan Hellenic said that GTLK defaulted on payments for the SH Vega, and with all its assets in the European Union frozen, it would not be able to take delivery.