Viking Line has struck a letter of intent with a Chinese shipyard to build a new LNG-powered ferry – with the option for an additional vessel.
The letter of intent has been signed with Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry Co Ltd for a €190 million passenger vessel that will be delivered in 2020. The aim is to sign a final agreement during 2017. The letter of intent also includes an option for an additional vessel.
The North Baltic Sea ferry operator said in a statement that the vessel is intended to be a collaborative project, and the plan is to engage a number of Finnish and European suppliers including Deltamarin, Wärtsilä and ABB Marine. The new vessel will serve the Turku - Åland Islands - Stockholm route.
The vessel will be 218m in length and have a gross registered tonnage of 63,000 tonnes. Passenger capacity will be 2,800, and the length of its cargo lanes will be 1,500m. Viking Line will hire Scandinavian architects for the interior design.
“Our intention is for the vessel to run on liquefied natural gas (LNG). We have excellent experience with this from Viking Grace, the first large LNG-powered passenger vessel in the world. Great emphasis has been placed in the planning work on environmentally sound solutions, including new innovative energy-efficient applications. Many years of planning have gone into this newbuilding project in conjunction with the European Union’s Motorways of the Seas project under the scope of the Connecting Europe Facility funding instrument, which has also included the Port of Turku and the Ports of Stockholm,” says Viking Line’s chief executive officer Jan Hanses.