“Last minute legal challenge forces us to delay the start of our Malta-Sicily service,” says a press release from Ponte Ferries.
The new ferry company says it has been forced to delay launch of its ferry service to Sicily due to a last-minute legal challenge with Sicilian authorities by another competing operator, which objected to Ponte’s use of the Port of Augusta.
In another press release, competitor Virtu Ferries denies. “Ponte Ferries have once again had to delay their ferry service, causing their clients much angst. This time they are seeking to conceal from their responsibility by seeking to shift the blame on Virtu Ferries, alleging that we have made a last-minute legal challenge. Virtu Ferries made no such, or indeed any other, challenge.”
Like Ponte Ferries, Virtu Ferries applied for berthing facilities at the Port of Augusta.
Neither Ponte nor Virtu had been given the green light to start ferrying passengers to Augusta.
Virtu Ferries lands its ferry in Pozzallo, south of Sicily.
Augusta is closer to the Strait of Messina.