Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries`s LNG carrier.
The South Korean government will place an order for what would be the country’s first liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fueled sea carriers in August as a campaign to promote LNG-fueled vessels as the mainstay of Korean shipping and shipbuilding industry.
In an economic ministerial meeting presided over by Deputy Prime Minister Kim Dong-yeon on Thursday, the government announced measures to reinvigorate the country’s shipbuilding and shipping industries through focus on LNG fuel.
The orders for two 200,000-ton bulkers to transport cargoes to and from Korea and Australia will be placed in August,
To stimulate demand for environmentally-friendly vessels, special incentives will be given out to companies ordering LNG-fueled vessels through a new state entity Korean Ocean Business Corp. launching in July designed to promote the shipping industry.
The orders will be given primarily to the three majors - Samsung Heavy Industries Co., Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co.
The actions also are in line with stricter maritime regulations.
The International Maritime Organization will apply tougher environmental regulation from 2020 by reducing the global cap for sulphur in fuel oil used on board ships from the current 3.5 percent to 0.5 percent.
The Korean government also laid out plans to invest more aggressively in facilities such as in establishing an LNG bunkering facility at major ports including those in Busan and Ulsan and also an LNG vessel loading appliance at Korea Gas Corporation’s base in Tongyeong, South Gyeongsang Province.
An unnamed government official said that it plans to enhance cooperation with related international organizations such as IMO to establish an overall environment favorable to the local industry and develop a multilateral cooperation system with major countries.
By Yoon Won-sup and Lee Eun-joo
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