Malaysian shipping company MISC has secured charter deals for two liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers with the ExxonMobil subsidiary SeaRiver Maritime.

MISC’s vessel-owning entities Polaris LNG One and Polaris LNG Two have signed the 15-year charter contracts.

ExxonMobil will use the two MISC-supplied carriers to transport LNG around the world.

The Malaysian shipping company noted the charters for the vessels are expected to begin in the first quarter of 2023.

MISC Group CEO / Yee Yang Chien said: “This is certainly a landmark moment for MISC, and we are proud to expand this strategic partnership with ExxonMobil through SeaRiver in providing best-in-class shipping solutions, beginning with petroleum and now LNG.

“We honour the trust and value the opportunity given for us to support ExxonMobil in ensuring safe, efficient and reliable transportation of LNG. Ultimately, this partnership is a testament to our capabilities of fulfilling the world’s growing demands for this energy source.”

Samsung Heavy Industries of Korea will build the two LNG carriers for MISC.

To be constructed in South Korea, the ships will feature modern XDF propulsion, Mark III Flex Plus containment system and full re-liquefaction facility. The LNG carriers will have a capacity of 174,000cbm.

ExxonMobil Global LNG marketing vice-president Alex Volkov said: “The addition of these two vessels will help us build a competitive LNG value chain as ExxonMobil continues to grow its global gas portfolio and expand supply positions to meet evolving needs of our customers.”

Currently, MISC operates a fleet of 29 LNG carriers and two floating storage units (FSUs) with a combined deadweight tonnage (dwt) capacity of over two million.

In September, MISC signed an agreement with Japanese firms Mitsubishi and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) to co-own two newbuild LNG vessels for the LNG Canada project.