Japan’s shipping giant NYK and compatriot Kyushu Electric have formed a joint venture and ordered one liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering vessel from Mitsubishi Shipbuilding.
The two firms each have a 40 percent stake in KEYS Bunkering West Japan, established in February this year, according to a joint statement.
Also, the JV includes Itochu Enex with a 15 percent stake and Saibu Gas with a 5 percent share.
The goal is to launch LNG fuel supply business for ships in Japan’s Kyushu and Setouchi regions in the spring of 2024, the statement said.
In that regard, the JV concluded a shipbuilding contract for one private LNG bunkering vessel with compatriot Mitsubishi Shipbuilding.
The 82.4 meters long vessel will have a 3,500 cbm capacity.
Moreover, Mitsubishi would deliver the LNG dual-fuel ship in March of 2024, the statement said.
Following delivery, the vessel would become the first LNG bunkering vessel operated in West Japan, they said.
The partners did not reveal the price tag of the order.
This move follows an announcement in September last year. NYK said then it had signed a memorandum of understanding with fuel distributor Itochu Enex, city gas supplier Saibu Gas, and utility Kyushu Electric Power to form an LNG bunkering business.
The partners also received support from the Ports and Harbours Bureau, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism for the development of LNG bunkering bases.