Japan’s MOL inks deal with QatarEnergy for three new LNG carriers

Japan’s MOL said it had signed a long-term charter contract for three newbuilding liquefied natural gas carriers with QatarEnergy, boosting the total to seven LNG carriers under the giant shipbuilding program.

In April, state-owned QatarEnergy picked MOL as the first owner for its shipbuilding program.

Hudong-Zhonghua will build these three 174,000-cbm LNG carriers and the Chinese shipbuilder will also construct these three new vessels.

According to a statement by MOL issued on Thursday, Hudong-Zhonghua would deliver these three carriers in 2027.

MOL did not provide any additional information regarding the deal or the vessels.

Hudong-Zhonghua previously said the first four vessels, part of its fifth-generation Changxeng series, would be 299 meters long and 46.4 meters wide.

Also, the LNG carriers would feature a reliquefaction system as well.

The Chinese shipbuilder, part of CSSC, recently won a deal to build five 174,000-cbm LNG carriers under the QatarEnergy shipbuilding program as well.

QatarEnergy signed the charter deals with a consortium of Japan’s NYK, K Line, Malaysia’s MISC, and China LNG Shipping.

In March 2021, QatarEnergy launched a tender to a large group of owners for the chartering of more than 100 LNG carriers for its future requirements related to its giant capacity expansion in Qatar and the Golden Pass terminal in the US.

Besides these contracts for vessels at Hudong-Zhonghua, the firm signed contracts this year for more than fifty LNG carriers to be built by the three largest yards in South Korea, namely DSMEHyundai Heavy, and Samsung Heavy.

These vessels each have a price tag of about $215 million.

With the 12 vessels in China, QatarEnergy completed contracts under the program for more than 60 LNG carriers up to date.

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