Bahri Orders First VLCCs from IMI
Bahri, the world's largest owner and operator of very large crude carriers, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to build its first very large crude carrier (VLCC) at the International Maritime Industries (IMI) yard in Saudi Arabia.
The agreement signed with IMI and Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), one of the partners in IMI, sees Bahri committing the new mega-shipyard its first order before the end of July 2019.
Following the placing of the order, IMI will engage HHI as a sub-contractor to build the vessel in South Korea. HHI, in turn, will help facilitate the transfer of knowledge enabling IMI to independently build VLCCs to international shipbuilding standards in Saudi Arabia.
Abdullah Aldubaikhi, CEO of Bahri, said: “Committed to playing a pivotal role in the transformation of the Kingdom into an important regional and global logistics and transportation hub, Bahri has been exploring new horizons for industry cooperation to take its vision forward."
Aldubaikhi added: "This agreement, which further strengthens our strong strategic relationship with IMI and HHI, signifies a major development in this direction, and we are confident it will provide a boost to our ongoing efforts aimed at enhancing our offerings and bolstering our capabilities. We look forward to a fruitful collaboration that will immensely benefit our customers and shareholders.”
On his part, Fathi K. Al-Saleem, CEO of IMI, said: “This agreement further strengthens the business relationship between IMI and its shareholders, as well as contributing to the development of a localized maritime industry supply chain infrastructure, technical expertise for Saudi nationals, and a track record in shipbuilding.”
International Maritime Industries is a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, Bahri, Lamprell, and Hyundai Heavy Industries. Located in the King Salman Complex for International Maritime Industries and Services at Ras Al-Khair, Saudi Arabia, IMI is tipped to be the largest, full-service maritime facility in the Middle East and North Africa.
With a capacity to manufacture four offshore rigs, over 40 vessels including three VLCCs, and service over 260 maritime products on an annual basis, the facility will propel growth in the Kingdom’s logistics and transportation sector.
Major production operations are expected to commence toward the end of 2020 with the facility reaching its full production capacity by 2022.