KUALA LUMPUR: The luxury superyacht linked to the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal will be sold for no less than US$130 million, which is half its original price.
Equanimity, which currently belongs to the Malaysian government, is reportedly worth US$250 million.
The guide price was set after the yacht was valued by UK-based independent appraiser Winterbothams, said lawyer Sitpah Selvaratnam on Thursday (Dec 13). She is leading the legal team for the government and 1MDB on the Equanimity case.
"Now there is a guide price to potential buyers. The market value as appraised by Winterbothams which is US$130 million," Sitpah told reporters.
She also said that the government had received a court order to permit the second phase of the judicial sale of the vessel.
"The first phase received bids but the bids were not of acceptable degree. So, we have to move into the second phase," the lawyer added.
She explained that the second phase will be a normal sale through private negotiation, and the completion date of the sale has been set for Mar 31, 2019.
The Cayman Islands-registered Equanimity reportedly belonged to fugitive Malaysian businessman Jho Low. It was seized in February off Bali, Indonesia, at the request of the US Department of Justice, before it was handed over to the Malaysian government in August.
On Aug 24, a Malaysian court granted an application by the government as well as 1MDB and two of its subsidiaries to sell the yacht.
In the application filed on Aug 23, the four plaintiffs asked for the sale of the ship, bunkers, fuel, lubricants and other consumables on board to be conducted via public tender or private treaty by the Admiralty Court sheriff.