Russia-based Baltic Fleet Tanker has signed contracts with Oka Shipyard and Red Sormovo and State Transport Leasing Company (STLC PJSC) for the construction of seven river-sea type ships.

The new fleet will consist of three RST-54 combination carriers and four RST-27 tankers.

Under the terms of the contract, Oka Shipyard will build two RST-27 tankers three RST-54 tankers and Sormovo will build the remaining two RST-27 tankers.

The ships are slated to be delivered during the 2016 river navigation season.

The ships will join the fleet of 17 vessels comprising of a combination of both owned and chartered vessels, used to transport oil products for its major client, Lukoil.

STLC director general Sergey Chaplgyin said: "BF Tanker has consistently implemented its commitments to PAO, Lukoil, for the transportation of oil products using a new, safe and efficient fleet, this is our priority.

"BF Tanker has consistently implemented its commitments to PAO, Lukoil, for the transportation of oil products using a new, safe and efficient fleet, this is our priority."

"Despite the current difficulties faced by the Russian financial sector, one of the largest Russian leasing companies agreed to support this important ship construction order, according to our information, this is the largest order placed this year at Russian shipyards."

With the addition of the new vessels, the river carrier targets to transport one million tonnes of oil products to the ports of St Petersburg and Vysotsk in 2016.

In addition, the company plans to increase its fleet in the future.

In Russia, the government is encouraging the construction of new ships with the implementation of a new law supporting local shipbuilding and navigation.