US-based International Seaways (INSW) has signed an agreement to build three dual-fuel LNG VLCCs.

The three vessels, which are expected to be delivered in 2023, will be constructed at the South Korean shipyard Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME).

Once delivered, the newbuilds will commence seven-year time charters with oil industry company Shell.

The company stated that it is expecting to finance the cost of construction with both cash and long-term financing.

INSW president and CEO Lois K Zabrocky said: “We are pleased to partner with market-leading counterparty Shell on these three dual-fuel LNG VLCCs. In addition to generating strong, stable cash flows for seven years, with added upside due to profit-sharing above the base rate, we are once again renewing our fleet at very attractive levels. Importantly, we expect these tankers to be well-suited to adhere to future environmental regulation throughout their life, as they meet both today’s IMO Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) and also exceed the 2025 Phase III EEDI targets by about 8%.

“Their significant environmental benefits, including substantially reducing our carbon footprint, are in keeping with Seaways’ commitment to ESG-focused corporate citizenship, and we are proud to continue to be at the forefront of sustainability initiatives in the maritime sector.”

Headquartered in New York City, INSW is one of the major tanker corporations in the International Flag markets, offering energy transportation services for petroleum and crude oil products.

As of now, the company owns and runs a fleet of 36 vessels, including 13 Panamaxes/LR1s, 11 VLCCs, four Aframaxes/LR2s, four MR tankers and two Suezmaxes.

It also has ownership interests in two floating storage and offloading service vessels through joint ventures.