China’s Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding has delivered the final vessel in the series of six newbuilding liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers developed for the Sinopec LNG Transport Project.

The newly delivered CESI Lianyungang will be owned by a joint venture (JV) of Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), China COSCO Shipping (CCSC), as well as China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec).

The vessel will operate under a long-term charter to move LNG purchased by Sinopec from the Australia Pacific LNG Project.

Featuring a 290m length and 45.60m width, CESI Lianyungang has a draft capacity of 11.70m.

Equipped with a membrane-type LNG Tank, the carrier has a 174,100m³ cargo tank and a primary dual-fuel diesel-electric engine. It can sail at a speed of 19.5k.

In order to oversee the construction and ensure the safety and quality of the six LNG carriers under the Sinopec LNG Transport Project, MOL has provided technical expertise to Hudong and has created a shipbuilding supervision team.

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“LNG is considered to be a clean energy source and is drawing attention in China because of the increasing awareness of environmental issues.”

The Sinopec LNG Transport Project, launched in 2013 to build LNG carriers in China, follows MOL’s participation in the ExxonMobil LNG project, which was announced in March 2010.

The ExxonMobil project included the development of four newbuilding LNG carriers, which were built by Hudong and delivered in April 2016.

LNG is considered to be a clean energy source and is drawing attention in China because of the increasing awareness of environmental issues.

China’s LNG market has reportedly witnessed a steady growth and is predicted to experience a further increase in demand for LNG over the upcoming years.

MOL is currently operating 96 LNG carriers, which include existing and vessels under construction, while it plans to further expand its fleet.