Norwegian carrier MPC Container Ships ASA (MPCC) has ordered two carbon-neutral 1,300 TEU vessels from Chinese shipyard Taizhou Sanfu Ship Engineering in a bid to establish a green transportation corridor in Northern Europe.
The vessels come with a dual fuel engine setup which enables operation on methanol as well as conventional marine gasoil (MGO).
MPCC said the new vessels will allow the carrier to take a significant leap forward in its commitment to use carbon-neutral solutions in regional container trades together with partners.
Delivery is scheduled for the second half of 2024.
The newly ordered vessels come with 15-year time charters to Norwegian transportation company North Sea Container Line AS (NCL), backed by contracts of affreightment (CoAs) from various parties, including a 15-year CoA with Norwegian industrial group Elkem ASA.
The project has been awarded NOK 13.7 million ($1.4 million) by Enova, owned by the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment, and NOK 60 million ($6 million) from the NOx fund, the Norwegian business sector’s fund to reduce emissions.
The vessels will be majority owned by MPCC (90.1 per cent) together with Topeka MPC Maritime AS (9.9 per cent), a joint venture between Topeka Holding AS, a zero-emission shipping company owned by Wilhelmsen Group, and MPC Capital AG.
“I am excited to announce the order of two carbon-neutral newbuildings with long-term time charters,” said MPCC CEO, Constantin Baack.
“Together with our partners NCL and Elkem, this project allows us to set up a green transportation corridor in Northern Europe, proving our ability to identify and execute on opportunities that are accretive whilst allowing us to make the right move towards a further decarbonisation of the fleet.
“It also demonstrates that we can meet ambitious environmental goals by joining forces with like-minded partners and we are looking forward to facilitating a green container shipping supply chain along the Norwegian coastline.”
The alliance‘s aims is to ensure the IMO’s upcoming sulphur regulations are enforced by the wider shipping industry.