Shipping company Pasha Hawaii and manufacturer Keppel AmFELS announced that they have achieved construction milestones for two new liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuelled containerships.

The keel laying ceremony was held for M/V George III while the first steel plate cut was celebrated for M/V Janet Marie.

The Ohana-class LNG-powered carriers are being constructed at Keppel AmFELS in Brownsville, Texas.

Once delivered, the two 774ft-long US Jones Act vessels will join Pasha Hawaii’s fleet and serve the Hawaii/Mainland trade lane.

The ‘Ohana Class vessels have been named in honour of the late parents of The Pasha Group president and CEO George Pasha, IV, and will be delivered next year.

George Pasha, IV said: “Construction of the new vessels continues to progress on schedule. These LNG-powered containerships were designed to support the needs of shippers in the Hawaii trade lane, while minimising environmental impact in the communities we serve.

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“Adding George III and Janet Marie to our existing fleet will greatly enhance our service capabilities and on-time delivery, marking three generations of service to Hawaii.”

"Today’s construction milestones at Keppel AmFELS are real evidence of the capability we have at shipyards across the US to build any kind of ship."

The LNG-powered vessels feature an optimised hull form, an underwater propulsion system with a high-efficiency rudder and propeller, as well as an advanced engine.

In March, the M/V George III’s dual-fuelled, MAN Diesel & Turbo ME-GI (Gas Injection) main engine completed factory acceptance testing.

American Maritime Partnership chairman Matt Woodruff said: “Today’s construction milestones at Keppel AmFELS are real evidence of the capability we have at shipyards across the US to build any kind of ship.

“These Jones Act ships being built at Keppel will be amongst the most modern, fuel-efficient containerships in the world, and are living and breathing proof that we have the know-how and the can-do spirit to keep America a global leader in shipbuilding innovation.”