SFL buys two LNG-powered chemical tankers for $114 million

SFL Corporation has purchased two LNG dual-fuel chemical carriers for about $114 million. The firm also arranged long-term employment for the vessels with affiliates of Stolt Tankers, a unit of Stolt-Nielsen.

John Fredriksen-controlled SFL said in a statement on Tuesday that the 33,000-dwt vessels are built in 2022/2023 and fitted with stainless steel cargo tanks.

The company did not reveal the names of the vessels.

SFL expects to take delivery of the vessels between June and August this year and both vessels will be employed for a minimum of eight years.

Also, one vessel will be on a fixed rate time-charter and one vessel will be employed in a pool with similar-sized vessels.

The fixed rate vessel has extension options of up to three years, in addition to purchase options after year five and eight, subject to a profit share mechanism with SFL, the company said.

Six LNG-powered ships

Ole B. Hjertaker, CEO of SFL Management said the announcement marks “another accretive investment for the company and will add two sophisticated chemical carriers to our fleet.”

“With these vessels, we will have six LNG dual-fuel vessels in our fleet, and the transaction demonstrates our ability to expand our portfolio of maritime assets with vessels suitable for long term charters to industry leading companies,” he said.

He added that the market dynamics for stainless-steel chemical tankers “are also very favorable now, with steady underlying growth in demand, ageing fleet and a limited orderbook.”

China’s Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI) recently delivered SFL’s fourth and final LNG dual-fuel pure car and truck carrier, Thor Highway.

In September 2023, GSI delivered the first LNG-powered PCTC in this batch, Emden, followed by the delivery of Wolfsburg in November.

Both of these PCTCs serve a long-term charter with German giant Volkswagen Group.

Moreover, it delivered Odin Highway in January this year. This vessel and Thor Highway will work for K Line under charter deals.

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