Saturday, November 17, 2007

Vietnam launches largest container ship built in Vietnam

Ha Long shipyard launches biggest container ship

The Vinashin Dragon leaves the slipway into the water at the launching ceremony in Quang Ninh Province yesterday

By MINH NGUYEN

(SGT-HCMC) Ha Long Shipyard yesterday successfully launched a container ship in northern Quang Ninh Province with its capacity of 1,750 twenty-foot-equivalent units (TEU), which is the biggest container ship ever built in Vietnam.

Shipyard director Nguyen Duc Than said the container ship, named Vinashin Dragon, would be delivered to a local client by the end of the first quarter next year. It is the first ship of a contract for five container ships ordered by Vinashin Lines, and both the shipbuilder and the client are members of the giant Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group (Vinashin).

The 184-meter-long and 25-meter-wide ship, with a tonnage equivalent to 23,000DWT, is worth US$36 million. Construction of the ship was supervised by Germany’s register company GL, and it is equipped with European machines.

Besides this order to build a series of large container ships, the shipyard will also be launching cargo ships of 53,000DWT, Than said, adding the shipyard was making in-depth investment to enhance its capacity for building ships of up to 70,000DWT.

Ha Long Shipyard is one of two shipyards selected for implementing a contract between Vinashin and Britain’s Graig Investments in building a series of 15 vessels of 53,000DWT. Under the contract signed in January of 2004, these 15 vessels would be built within five years.

In related news, Pha Rung Shipyard in the port city of Haiphong will deliver a cargo ship of 20,000DWT to Vinashin Maritime Company (Vinashinship) in December this year. The Vinashin Bay ship is scheduled for test run by the end of this month.

Meanwhile, Ben Kien Shipyard in Haiphong has delivered an 8,700DWT ship to a Japanese customer named Kanematsu last month. The Unicorn Bravo ship was designed by Japan’s AZ and supervised by Japanese register company NK.

Another shipyard in Haiphong - Bach Dang Shipbuilding Industry Corporation, plans to deliver the VTC Dragon ship to Vitranschart, a subsidiary of the Vietnam National Shipping Lines (Vinalines). The 22,500DWT ship, designed by Vinakita as a joint venture between Vinashin and Japan’s Kitada, is part of a contract for building eight ships for Vinalines.