Photo: Courtesy of DSME

DSME surpasses its yearly target with fresh round of 1.29 bln LNG carrier deals

South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) has won orders for a total of 6 LNG carriers worth over $1.29 billion.

Four LNG carrier newbuilds were ascribed to European shipowners. The contract is worth KRW 1.2 trillion (approximately $880 million) and the vessels are scheduled for delivery by the end of October 2026, DSME said in an exchange filing.

Two more LNG carriers were booked by undisclosed Asian shipowners. The contract is worth KRW 616.7 billion (approximately $439 million). The LNG carrier pair is expected for delivery in the first half of 2026.

According to Business Korea, the ships are linked to the Qatar LNG development project.

Back in 2020, Qatar Petroleum, now renamed to QatarEnergy, signed deals with three South Korean shipbuilders, namely DSME, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), and Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) to reserve slots for its LNG tanker fleet expansion valued at over $19 billion.

Qatari giant said the reservations would be utilized for its future LNG carrier fleet requirements of up to 100 LNG carriers, including those for the ongoing expansion projects in the North Field and in the United States.

The capacity reservation relates to a major portion of the shipbuilders’ LNG ship construction capacity through the year 2027.

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The latest order spree comes on the back of contracts revealed last month for two LNG carriers, believed to be linked with Qatar Energy.

The contract, worth KRW 595.9 billion (about $425 million), was signed with an undisclosed shipowner from Oceania on 21 September 2022.

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In June this year, DSME said it was hired to build a 174,000 cbm LNG carrier quartet for a Korean consortium comprising H-Line Shipping, Pan Ocean, and SK Shipping.

The ships will be built at the Okpo Shipyard and delivered by the first quarter of 2025 for use in QatarEnergy’s North Field Expansion Project.

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In total DSME is believed to have locked in a total of 19 LNG carrier orders for the project, Yonhap reports, adding that the shipbuilder has surpassed its yearly target of $8.9 billion worth of orders currently standing at $9.4 billion. The orderbook backlog is predominantly driven by LNG demand pushing LNG carrier tally at DSME to a total of 34 construction projects secured this year.

The LNG bonanza comes at a critical time for the shipyard. Namely, in September DSME signed a tentative takeover deal with compatriot conglomerate Hanwha Group that is expected to put the shipbuilder on the right track.

The debt-ridden shipbuilder has been under state management for 22 years as it struggled to find an investor. 

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