's national maritime fleet, will take out a $70 mln loan from HSH Nordbank AG
for the purchase of 3 new vessels, said executive director Hristo Donev
The company is trying to address the problem of its ageing fleet and related high maintenance costs.
NMB, which has decommissioned 5 ships over the past couple of months, has placed orders for 2 new vessels with local ship-builder Bulyard. One of them will be furnished as collateral for the Nordbank loan.
The loan money will be spent on 2-3 new vessels, possibly manufactured as recently as 2002, said Donev. NMB may also opt to buy vessels still under construction and sell them on.
NMB posted a profit of 25.1 mln levs in January-October 2006, down 15 mln levs year-on-year. Payroll and social security costs increased by 5.5 mln levs.