The Maltese Government said that Malta Drydocks had sold six cargo ships originally ordered by the former Soviet Union but never paid for or delivered. The sale was announced by Mimcol, the holding company for Malta government investments, which refused to disclose to whom the ships were sold, or for how much. The Soviet company Sudoimport ordered eight timber carriers from Malta Drydocks in 1984. Two were delivered before the collapse of the Soviet Union. Russia was unable to pay for the rest, and they lay in harbour for years, defying attempts to sell them elsewhere. The Soviet Union was to have paid US$17.5 million for each of the 7,700-ton ships.