PAO Sovcomflot (SCF Group), Rosneft, the State Transport Leasing Company (STLC), and Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex have signed a set of agreements that entail the construction of five Aframax tankers powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
The 114,000 dwt vessels will be built by Zvezda jointly with Hyundai Heavy Industries (Republic of Korea) and are scheduled to enter service to enable export shipments of crude oil and oil products from 2021. The tankers will have an ice class of 1A/1B, sufficient to ensure safe year-round operations in regions with challenging ice conditions, including the Baltic Sea and subarctic seas.
Sergey Frank, President and CEO of Sovcomflot: “We hope that the beginning of serial production of cutting-edge large-capacity LNG-fueled tankers in Russia will facilitate the further development of Russia’s port infrastructure that will allow ships to be bunkered with LNG fuel. We are also looking forward to seeing Russian regulators and maritime authorities continue with providing incentives for charterers, ship owners, and fleet operators who are taking real steps towards investing in green technologies.”
Frank’s statement follows similar comments in June this year: “We think this is the right time to change our equipment, to go for LNG. We expect China to introduce severe emissions legislation because of its concerns about the environment. And we expect other shipowners to follow.”
SCF will operate all the tankers, first supervising their construction and then providing a range of services to ensure the effective and safe management of these vessels, including the recruitment of high-skilled crews and their management.
This series of tankers are purpose-designed to use LNG as their primary fuel, which significantly reduces their environmental impact. The vessels were designed to comply with most stringent international Sulphur Oxide (SOx), Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emission standards, governed by new IMO regulations that are scheduled to come into effect from 2020 and will apply, amongst other areas, to the Baltic and North Seas.
Source: SCF Group