Knutsen: first PGNiG-chartered LNG carrier launched in South Korea

South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries has floated out Knutsen’s liquefied natural gas carrier that will go on charter to Poland’s dominant gas firm and LNG importer, PGNiG.

The shipbuilder launched the 174,000-cbm Lech Kaczynski on June 4, according to a social media post by Knutsen’s unit France LNG Knutsen.

PGNiG previously said that this LNG carrier would begin its first journey in early 2023, followed by its sister vessel, Grazyna Gesicka, later the same year.

Norway’s Knutsen ordered these vessels at Hyundai Heavy in October 2020 for about $187.5 per ship. PGNiG chartered these carriers to ship its contracted US LNG supplies to Poland for a period of 10 years.

Knutsen first PGNiG-chartered LNG carrier launched in South Korea
Image: Knutsen LNG France

PGNiG also took on charter four more newbuild LNG carriers from Knutsen and two from Greece’s Maran Gas.

In addition to these newbuilds, PGNiG also chartered three already built LNG carriers, each with a capacity of approximately 160,000 cbm.

Two of these vessels would be delivered to PGNiG by the end of the first half of 2022, while the third one would join the fleet in the second half of the year, the firm previously said.

The first of these three vessels is already working for the Polish firm.

In May, the 2014-built 161,941-cbm Maran Gas Apolonia, owned by Maran Gas, delivered the first shipment from Venture Global’s Calcasieu Pass export plant in Louisiana to the Swinoujscie regasification facility in Poland.

This also marked the first ever delivery by a PGNiG-chartered carrier, the firm said.

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