"Big Three" Korean Yards Vie for Qatari LNG Ships
The state-run Qatar Petroleum (QP) has revealed plans to order 60 new LNG carriers preferably from South Korean shipyards. Qatar's energy minister, Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi, who is also CEO of Qatar Petroleum, said the company plans to order 60 new LNG carriers.
QP has sent invitations to tender reserve shipbuilding capacity for LNG carriers to major shipbuilders across the world, including HHI, DSME and SHI.
Most LNG carriers owned by Qatar were built by Korea’s top three shipbuilders, known as "Big Three" – Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME).
According to Korea Times, competition is heating up among Korean shipbuilders to win 60 anticipated orders from Qatar, which would expedite the domestic shipbuilding industry's rebound from a long slump.
The report quoted industry analysts saying that a key point will be about how many empty shipbuilding slots each company can secure before commencing construction.
Domestic shipbuilders are confident about winning orders, citing they won 61 LNG carrier orders last year, which accounts for 86 percent of the world's total, said the report.
The energy minister said the company's "LNG shipbuilding acquisitions are expected to initially number 60 LNG carriers in support of planned production expansion, with a potential to exceed 100 new carriers over the next decade."
This is in line with the company's plan to increase its LNG output from the current 77 million tons a year to 110 million by 2024 to meet increasing demand.