RasGas-3 signed a $9bn Time Charter Agreement with JC Nakilat and Teekay Nakilat Corporations for the long-term charters of 12 large Q-Flex sized LNG vessels bringing RasGas long-term charter fleet to a total of 26 ships. The Q-flex ships with an LNG cargo capacity of between 210,000 cubic metres and 217,000 cubic metres, the largest ships ever to be associated with any long-term RasGas agreement to date, will be delivered to RasGas between March and August 2008.
Under the terms of the agreements, RasGas will charter the vessels for a firm period of 20 years to deliver LNG from their 7.8 mtpa Train 6 into a purpose built terminal in the US Gulf Coast.
The ships will be built at the three Korean shipyards of Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Company Ltd, Samsung Heavy Industries and Hyundai Heavy Industries.
Qatar Gas Transport Company Ltd (QGTC) also signed several joint venture agreements with ship-owners that allow, under the terms the Time Charter Agreements, Nakilat to assume equity ownership of 60 per cent in eight ships and 40 per cent in four ships. The other partners are a Japanese consortium of five companies and Teekay Nakilat. Bob Curt, Managing Director of QGTC signed the agreements on behalf of QGTC.
“With the addition of the 12 vessels Nakilat will have an equity in a total of 28 ships”, said Faisal M Al Suwaidi, Nakilat Vice Chairman and QatarGas Vice-Chairman and CEO. “We need some 30 more vessels consisting of a combination of Q-Max type with a cargo capacity of 260,000 cubic metres and Q-Flex type LNG vessels”.
Meanwhile, ship building contracts were also signed at the same ceremony between the respective JC Nakilat and Teekay Nakilat consortiums and the shipyards of Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Company Ltd for five ships, Hyundai Heavy Industries for three ships and Samsung Heavy Industries for four ships.