2020 October 28 14:56
On 28 October 2020, SCF Group (SCF) and Arctic LNG 2, the operator of the Arctic LNG 2 project, concluded 30-year time charter agreements for three new icebreaking LNG carriers (cargo capacity of 172,410 cbm, ice class Arc7), SCF says in a press release. These vessels were ordered by SCF at Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME, Republic of Korea) earlier in October 2020, following the tender held by the project’s operator.
All three new vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2023. They will fly the Russian flag and have Russian crews.
Igor Tonkovidov, President & CEO of SCF, commented: “Strengthening SCF’s position in LNG shipping segment is amongst the priorities of our current long-term development strategy, which is aimed at growing highly visible long-term, cyclically resistant and higher-margin infrastructure cash flows. The total contract backlog relating to these new time charter agreements, over the 30-year charter period, is estimated at USD 4.2 billion. This will increase SCF’s total contract backlog to approximately USD 24 billion. I want to use this opportunity to thank our partners at NOVATEK, as well as its subsidiaries operating the Yamal LNG and the Arctic LNG 2 projects, for their support in implementing LNG projects in the Russian Arctic, which are of significant importance for the Russian economy, and I am looking forward to the next stage of our close collaboration.”
New LNG carriers are designed using SCF’s extensive experience of safely operating Christophe de Margerie, the world’s first icebreaking LNG carrier, which has been serving the Yamal LNG project since 2017. They will each feature a propulsion system comprising three Azipod units with a total capacity of 51 MW, which is comparable to that of 50 Let Pobedy, a nuclear-powered icebreaker (55 MW), and is almost 60 per cent higher than that of Lenin, the world’s first nuclear-powered icebreaker (32.4 MW). This propulsion system is expected to provide new vessels with increased speed and manoeuvrability when sailing in ice conditions, compared with icebreaking LNG carriers of the previous generation.
The delivery of this new generation of icebreaking LNG carriers should contribute towards opening year-round navigation along the eastern sector of the Northern Sea Route.
At present, SCF has 15 gas carriers in operation and a further 19 under construction.
PAO Sovcomflot (SCF Group) is one of the world's leading energy shipping companies, specialising in the transportation of crude oil, petroleum products, and liquefied gas, as well as the servicing of offshore oil and gas production. As of 28 October 2020, the Group’s fleet comprises 146 vessels with a total deadweight of over 12.6 million tonnes, including vessels owned through joint ventures. More than 80 vessels have an ice class.
SCF is involved in servicing large oil and gas projects in Russia and around the world: Sakhalin-1; Sakhalin-2; Varandey; Prirazlomnoye; Novy Port; Yamal LNG, and Tangguh (Indonesia). The Group is headquartered in St. Petersburg, with offices in Moscow, Novorossiysk, Murmansk, Vladivostok, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, London, Limassol, and Dubai.
Earlier in 2019-2020, another 15 icebreaking LNG carriers for the Arctic LNG 2 project were ordered from Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex (Russia). SCF Group will own the lead vessel of this series, with the remaining 14 being owned by SMART LNG, a joint venture between SCF Group and NOVATEK. These 15 vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2023-2025 and are time chartered to the project’s operator.
Arctic LNG 2 stakeholders are: NOVATEK (Russia); Total (France); CNPC (China); CNOOC (China), and Japan Arctic LNG, a consortium of Mitsui and JOGMEC (Japan).