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MOL SIGNS FOR THREE NEW ARCTIC LNG CARRIERS

MOL SIGNS FOR THREE NEW ARCTIC LNG CARRIERS

Tuesday, November 3, 2020 

Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), says that it has signed charter agreements for three newbuild icebreaking liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers with Russian joint venture LLC ARCTIC LNG 2.

The three vessels will be built by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering  and are scheduled for delivery in 2023. They will mainly transport LNG from a terminal on the Gydan Peninsula in the Russian Arctic to floating LNG storage units (FSU) to be installed at the trans-shipment terminal in Kamchatka (eastbound) and Murmansk (westbound) via the Northern Sea route. MOL's previous icebreaking LNG carriers can only sail eastbound in the Northern Sea Route mostly during summer and autumn when the ice is thinner. The new vessels will have a narrower width, hull form optimised for ice breaking, and an increased engine output which will enable the vessels to sail east via the Northern Sea Route all year round.

The combination of these ice-breaking LNG vessels, which can operate in the Northern routes throughout the year, and conventional LNG carriers that will transport LNG from the FSUs to their final destinations, will enable efficient year-round transportation of LNG from the Russian Arctic to the areas of demand, including those in Asia. The eastbound transportation route will reduce the distance of the voyage by about 65% compared to the westbound route via the Suez Canal for Asian destinations, thereby making a significant contribution to a reduction of maritime greenhouse gas emissions.

MOL has been engaged in transporting LNG using three icebreaking LNG carriers on the Northern Sea Route since March 2018 for the Yamal LNG Project in Russia. It will continue to actively pursue the diversification of LNG transportation to help meet growing energy demand, and contribute to the further development of the Northern Sea Route.

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