Carnival unit Princess Cruises has signed a memorandum of agreement with Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri to build two LNG-fuelled ships to reduce air emissions and marine gas oil.

The 175,000t vessels will be designed to carry around 4,300 guests at their lower berths.

To be built at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy, the vessels will be the largest ships in terms of capacity in Princess Cruises fleet.

Deliveries of the ships are scheduled to take place in late 2023 and 2025, respectively.

Princess Cruises president Jan Swartz said: “This revolutionary platform for next-generation, LNG-powered cruise ships will introduce innovative design and leisure experiences driven by the future vacation and lifestyle trends of our guests, further evolving the already best-in-class Princess Cruises experience we deliver today.”

The company plans to provide additional details and amenities of the new ships in the future.

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“There are no more significant milestones than these to reaffirm our market-leading position.”

Fincantieri CEO Giuseppe Bono said: “After so many years, we are ready to enter, together, a new era of this industry, increasingly aimed at reducing even more of our environmental impact.

“We proudly do this with an all-time record project, both in terms of size and technology.

“We believe that there are no more significant milestones than these to reaffirm our market-leading position.

“This builds upon the solid partnership between our country and Carnival, the largest foreign investor in Italy, while at the same time building upon our technological strength and increasing employment.”

Princess Cruises currently has three new Royal-class ships on order with Fincantieri, including its next new ship, Sky Princess, which is expected to be delivered by October next year.

The two other Royal-class ships are slated for delivery in 2020 and 2022, respectively.