Finnish shipbuilder Rauma Marine Constructions will build two LNG-powered car and passenger ferries for Tasmanian shipping company TT-Line as part of a deal signed last week.
Rauma says it would start construction of the two new roll-on/roll-off ships in the spring of 2022.
In addition, the yard aims to deliver the first dual-fueled vessel to TT-Line at the end of 2023 and the second one year later.
Once completed, the vessels would operate in challenging conditions on the Geelong–Devonport route running between mainland Australia and the island state of Tasmania, according to Rauma.
The ferries will accommodate 1,800 passengers and will have an approximate gross tonnage of 48,000.
Moreover, the duo will replace the Spirit of Tasmania I and II, both built in Finland in 1998.
TT-Line (Spirit of Tasmania) first odered the LNG-powered duo back in 2018 at Germany’s Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft but it canceled the order in March 2020 due to the shipyard’s financial problems.
After the cancellation of the deal, TT-Line had signed a memorandum of understanding with Rauma but later decided to withdraw from the deal citing the coronavirus pandemic as the reason behind the decision.
Initiated by the Tasmanian government, negotiations resumed in March this year and led to this binding construction deal signed on March 16 via a video conference.