Zhoushan Changhong International Shipyard Co., Ltd., a leading shipbuilder based in Zhejiang province, China, successfully launched a 63,500dwt bulk carrier being built for New Yangtze Navigation (Hong Kong) on April 19.
The vessel measures 199.99m in length overall, 32.26m in breadth moulded, and 18.50m in depth moulded, with the design draft of 11.30m. It is classed by LR.
It is said that the vessel is a second one in a series.
Florida-based shipping company Crowley Maritime Corporation took delivery on April 15 of a product tanker Louisiana, which is the third of four newbuilds having a potential for future conversion to LNG propulsion.
Designed by South Korean Hyundai Mipo Dockyards (HMD), the four Jones Act product tankers are being built for the company by Philly Shipyard (PSI) in Philadelphia.
The vessel is capable of carrying 330,000 barrels of product.
With its length of 600 feet, Louisiana has the capacity to transport crude oil or refined petroleum products, as well as various chemical cargoes.
"Milestones like today show we can deliver solutions that reinforce the value of the Jones Act vessels and American-built and American-crewed trade," said Rob Grune, Crowley's senior vice president and general manager, petroleum services.
"We are proud to deliver another Philly-born tanker, the shipyard's fifth tanker for Crowley and 23rd vessel in total," Philly Shipyard's President and CEO Steinar Nerbovik remarked.
Louisiana joined sister ships Ohio and Texas, which were delivered in October and December 2015, respectively. They were the first tankers to receive the American Bureau of Shipping's (ABS) LNG-Ready Level 1 approval, allowing the conversion to LNG propulsion in the future.
Crowley's fourth tanker is under construction at PSI and its delivery is planned for the third quarter of 2016.
Amid the doldrums in the shipbuilding industry, Chinese yards are struggling to survive. Jinhai Heavy Industry (JHI), an affiliate shipyard of China's transport giant HNA Group, is eyeing a major transformation. The yard has been stung by many cancellations.
According to Li Weijian, president of JHI, the shipyard has been making efforts to optimise its assets through streamlining its businesses and enhancing its technical level.
JHI has spun off and integrated several departments of the shipyard in the areas of design, sales and production, to make them run as independent subsidiaries to increase operation efficiency.
"The move has made our operation network more clear," Li says.
"I think currently the major problem in the domestic shipbuilding industry is not overcapacity but lack of efficiency. It might not be obvious in the good times, but when the market got worse, the drawbacks in production have been enlarged by the capital leverage," Li says.
According to Li, JHI is transforming the shipyard from traditional heavy industry to a precision industry firm in terms of both production and technology in order to get more high-value added orders.
Currently JHI has on hand orders for 62 vessels, with high-value added vessel types – including mega containerships, VLCCs and offshore platforms – accounting for more than 90% of the orders.
The shipyard has also used some idle capacity to develop its ship repair business. JHI established a dedicated ship repair subsidiary in 2015 and is now looking to develop a ship repair base in Zhoushan.
"Zhoushan has all the conditions needed to become the world's largest ship repair base," Li said.
"In these challenging times, the shipbuilding industry needs a re-balance between supply and demand. We as a shipyard need to join the revolution in both production and technology, so we can recover fast when the next round of opportunities come," Li concludes.
Chinese shipyard Yuexin Ocean Engineering delivered a 32m azimuth tugboat named AL MOBIN 4 to its shipowner from the Middle East on April 12, according to a domestic shipping news report.
The vessel measures 11.6m in breadth moulded and 5.36m in depth moulded, with the maximum designed draft of 5.81m, the report added.
Chinese shipyards have seen an increase in newbuilding orders in the first quarter of 2016, according to data released by China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
From January to March of 2016, the country's newbuilding orders jumped by 23,9 percent to 7.42 million dwt, compared to the same period a year earlier, while the shipyards constructed 8.35 million dwt in vessel tonnage during the first quarter, down by 11.8 percent.
The Chinese orderbook backlog decreased by 17 percent, as it stood at 120.35 million dwt by the end of March.
Due to a global oversupply of vessels, the Chinese shipbuilding industry struggled to stay afloat as it encountered a major decline in newbuilding orders.
During the first quarter of the year a total of 77 new ships were ordered, against the 375 ships ordered in the corresponding period in 2015, data released by Clarksons shows.
In January only 15 newbuilding orders were placed, compared to 179 in the corresponding month in 2015.
In February the number slightly increased to 17 orders, while the newbuilding contracts continued to rise in March as well, as shipowners ordered 45 new vessels, Clarksons figures indicate.
The ordering slump seems to be subsiding as 23 orders have already been booked for April, bringing the overall orderbook for this year to 100 new ships.
The Independence, a tanker built by California-based shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO, has set sail for sea trials and testing along the San Diego coastline.
The Independence is the first in a series of ECO Class tankers being built for the SEA-Vista fleet and the vessel will be operated by Seabulk Tankers.
Featuring a length of 185.9 meters, the vessel is an LNG-conversion-ready product tanker capable of carrying 330,000 barrels of cargo.
The construction of this 50,000dwt vessel began in November 2014.
China's listed shipyard Yangzijiang Shipbuilding saw two 82,000dwt bulk carriers leave dock on April 13, according to a domestic shipping news portal.
The owners of the two bulkers are Norway's Torvald Klaveness and Singapore's Everbright respectively.
Latvian Shipping Company's arm LCS Shipmanagement has expanded its fleet with a newbuild tanker Elandra Palm.
Elandra Palm is the second out of three new ships being built by the South Korea-based shipyard SSP Shipbuilding. The first of the three ships, Elandra Spruce, was received on Jan. 11, while the final fleet addition from the series is expected in May with the delivery of Elandra Oak.
"LSCSM adds the next ship to the fleet under its management to reach its maximum petroleum and chemical substance transportation capacity," said Robert Kirkup, Latvian Shipping Company's Chairman of the Management Board.
The 50,300dwt Elandra Palm has a length of 183 meters and width of 32 meters.
Latvian Shipping Company has currently 22 ships in its fleet.
The first quarter of 2016 was hit by a major decline in ordering newbuilds with only 77 new ships ordered by the end of March 2016, according to Clarksons data.
This is a substantial drop when compared to the corresponding period in 2015 when a total of 375 ships were ordered.
January was definitely the slowest month during the quarter with orders for only 15 ships placed against 179 in the corresponding month in 2015, according to Clarksons.
The figures for February showed a slight increase with 17 orders followed by 45 orders in March, mostly driven by Valemax ordering spree in China. On the other hand, South Korean shipbuilders managed to secure merely nine orders during the first quarter of the year.
Bulkers have especially experienced a drop in demand as just two non VlOC were ordered during the quarter as opposed to 78 in the first quarter in 2015, based on VesselsValue data.
However, the ordering slump seems to be subsiding as 23 orders have already been booked for April, bringing the overall orderbook for this year at 100 new ships.
Oslo-listed Ocean Yield ASA has received a 49,000dwt IMO II chemical tanker Navig8 Turquoise from Korean shipyard STX.
This is the fifth vessel delivered in a series of total eight chemical tankers that will be chartered to Navig8 Chemical Tankers under a 15-year "hell and high water" bareboat charter.
Navig8 Turquoise will be entered into and operated in Navig8 Group's Chronos8 commercial pool.
"Year to date we have taken delivery of four vessels and will during the next twelve months take delivery of another nine vessels bringing the fleet to a total of 27 vessels," said Ocean Yield ASA's CEO Lars Solbakken.
The delivery is part of a US$306.8m deal signed in April 2015 for eight newbuilding chemical tankers, four of which, built by Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, Korea, joined the company's fleet in Q2 and Q3 2015.
The remaining four 49,000dwt carriers, all built by STX, are scheduled for delivery in Q1-Q3 2016.