Zvezda lays keel for Sovcomflot’s LNG-fueled MR tanker

Russian Zvezda yard is continuing with the construction of LNG-powered MR-type product carriers for compatriot Sovmcoflot.

The yard held a keel-laying ceremony for the LNG-powered vessel with a hull number 038 on Wednesday, Sovcomflot said in a statement.

Sovcomflot ordered in total three 51,000-dwt LNG-powered MR product carriers at Zvezda and they will all go on long-term charter to Russian LNG producer Novatek.

This vessel is the third in the batch and Zvezda held a keel-laying ceremony for this carrier in January. The Russian yard started building the first carrier in this trio in September last year followed by the second in November.

Following delivery in 2022 and 2023, Novatek will use them to transport gas condensate in the Baltic Sea.

Russian ship repair deal

Sovcomflot also said in the same statement it has entered into a trilateral agreement to cooperate on the development of a ship repair cluster in Russia’s Far East.

The shipping firm signed the deal with SMART LNG, its joint venture with Novatek, and Far Eastern Shipbuilding and Ship Repair Center (FESRC), a subsidiary of Rosneft.

“The agreement pertains to the expansion of cooperation between the parties on servicing and repairing vessels and vessel equipment using ship repair cluster’s facilities,” it said.

Sovcomflot said its cooperation with Russian energy companies and financial institutions had made it possible to localise new civilian shipbuilding technologies in Russia and create the country’s first serial production of modern large-capacity cargo vessels, based at Zvezda.

This will serve as the foundation for the further development of a shipbuilding and ship repair cluster in Russia’s Far East, the firm said.

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