Qatar-based shipping and maritime company Nakilat has completed the second phase of its fleet management transition from Shell International Trading and Shipping Company.

A total of seven liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers transitioned to its in-house operational and technical management.

During the second phase transition, Q-Max LNG carrier Lijmiliya was the last vessel to transition from Shell to Nakilat Shipping Qatar Limited (NSQL) on 27 October.

Currently, the fleet size fully managed by NSQL stands at 26 vessels with 22 LNG vessels and four liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carriers.

Over the past several years, Nakilat has been working closely with its long-term partner Shell for a smooth transition of vessel management.

Nakilat CEO Abdullah Fadhalah Al Sulaiti said: “This milestone achieved in a safe and timely manner, despite the challenges presented by the global pandemic, is especially meaningful and demonstrates our strong commitment to safety, reliability, and efficiency through the provision of quality shipping and maritime services.”

Al Sulaiti continued: “Over the past years, Nakilat has grown in leaps and bounds with the steady expansion of its LNG fleet, which is the largest in the world. The management of our vessels centrally controlled from Qatar allows us to further capitalise on existing synergies with our main charterer (Qatargas), realise operational efficiencies, and optimise costs. I would also like to express our gratitude to Qatargas for their cooperation and the continuous support provided throughout our long-term strategic partnership and the entire vessel transition phases.

“We strive to steer forward through tactfully formulated strategies, seizing potential long-term growth opportunities, strengthening ship management capabilities, and enhancing operational excellence in our vision to be a global leader and provider of choice for energy transportation and maritime services.”

Phase one of the fleet management transition, involving ten LNG carriers, began in 2016 and was completed in August 2017.

In a separate development, 11 projects were inaugurated in Iran’s Anzali Port in the Caspian Sea.

Among the projects inaugurated, there is a grain depot with 50,000t capacity and a general cargo warehouse with an area of 4,509m².