Bahri Signs VLCC Order With IMI And HHI To Promote Indigenous Shipbuilding In Saudi Arabia
Bahri announced that it has signed a Vessel Purchase Agreement with International Maritime Industries (IMI) and also a sub-contract with Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) for a 319,000DWT Very Large Crude Oil Carrier which is expected to be delivered in October 2021.
This VPA is built on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Bahri, IMI, and HHI in June this year. The MoU stipulated that Bahri will issue IMI its first VLCC order before the end of July 2019, with IMI engaging HHI as a sub-contractor to build the VLCC at Ulsan, South Korea.
Commenting on the agreement, Abdullah Aldubaikhi, CEO, Bahri, said: “Our partnership with IMI and HHI represents a major step forward in the pursuit of our long-term goals, which will eventually translate into key milestones in the country’s transformation into an important regional and global logistics and transportation hub. The collaboration is also aimed at furthering our contribution to the development of the Kingdom’s own indigenous shipbuilding industry. We will benefit from the transfer of technology and knowledge to develop, increase, and promote local content and create suitable job opportunities for our citizens in line with the objectives of Saudi Vision 2030.”
On his part, Fathi K. Al-Saleem, CEO, IMI, said: “This sub-contract award provides many benefits for IMI, including the transfer of knowledge from HHI to IMI, a mechanism to grant the permission for the use of Intellectual Property (IP) to IMI, development plans for IMI employees to acquire new skills in shipbuilding and planning, as well as technical assistance. This project will also contribute to the long-term growth of this new industry in Saudi Arabia and will enable IMI to independently build VLCCs in Saudi Arabia to the highest international shipbuilding standards.”
“This project award further strengthens the business relationship between IMI and its shareholders, as well as contributing to the development of a localized maritime industry supply chain infrastructure, technical expertise for Saudi nationals, and a track record in shipbuilding,” added Al-Saleem.
IMI, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, Bahri, Lamprell, and HHI, is located at the King Salman Complex for International Maritime Industries and Services in Ras Al-Khair, Saudi Arabia. This shipyard will be the largest, full-service maritime facility in MENA. It will have the capacity to manufacture four newbuild offshore rigs and over 43 newbuild vessels including VLCCs annually. In addition to this, it can also service more than 260 maritime products. By the end of 2020, it is expected that the major production operations will commence with the facility reaching its full production capacity by 2022.