Iceland’s Eimskip and Greenland’s Royal Arctic Line (RAL) have signed an agreement to share capacity, and together ordered three new ice-class containerships to be built in China.
Eimskip said it has finalized contracts with China Shipbuilding Trading Company Limited and Guangzhou Wenchong Shipyard Co. Ltd. for the construction of two 2,150 TEU container vessels, and RAL also signed a contract for one vessel of the same type from the same shipyard.
With a length of 180 meters and breadth of 31 meters, the new vessels are larger than the current ships in the trade and will be equipped to sail in the North Atlantic with ice class design in accordance with the Polar Code. The vessels have a TIER III engines and built-in scrubber systems.
The contract price of each vessel is approximately $32 million, and the vessels are expected to be delivered in 2019.
“This is an important step in the renewal and development of Eimskip’s future vessel fleet,” said Gylfi Sigfússon, President and CEO of Eimskip. “We have also reached an agreement with Royal Arctic Line, built on our long-lasting relationship and cooperation since 1993. The port developments in Nuuk, Reykjavík and Tórshavn will enable larger vessels to serve in our market area. We assume that the cooperation will increase business activities between the Arctic nations, especially between Iceland and Greenland, where activities have been limited due to lack of frequency and direct services.”
“The agreement for the cooperation, subject to approval from relevant authorities, is a very important step to connect Greenland to the global markets,” added Verner Hammeken, CEO of Royal Arctic Line. “It creates opportunities for our export customers, allowing goods to be further refined in Greenland before transporting them directly to destinations all over the world in a more efficient way. Customers can also select transportation directly from new market areas instead of having to go only through Denmark.”