India: GAIL delays LNG carriers tender

India’s GAIL has again postponed its tender re-floated in September, seeking bids to hire nine LNG newbuilds in order to ship U.S. LNG starting in 2017. 

According to the initial tender, GAIL is looking for 9 LNG ships of a cargo capacity of 150,000-180,000 cbm, enabling it to comply with its off-take commitments at Sabine Pass and Cove Point LNG projects from December 2017.

The initial deadline for bid submissions was set for December 17, but the company has pushed the date back February 29, the amended tender documents reveal.

According to local media reports, GAIL pushed back the date once more as Indian shipyards are looking to forge ties with foreign shipbuilders, gaining access to technology necessary for LNG carriers construction.

Cochin Shipyard has already struck a deal with Samsung Heavy Industries to cooperate in the construction of the vessels. It has also been licenced by GTT of France to build LNG carriers with the Mark III membrane containment system.

However, L&T Shipbuilding, that has a deal with Hyundai Heavy Industries pulled out of the bidding as it turns its focus to defence projects.

Pipavav Defence and Offshore Engineering has reportedly agreed cooperation with Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) of South Korea.

Nine vessels, three of which have to be built by shipyards in India, will have a delivery window from January 1, 2019, to May 31, 2019, for foreign shipyards and July 1, 2022, and ending June 30, 2023, for Indian shipyards.

Gail intends to time charter the vessels for an 18-year period without directly ordering the vessels at shipyards. All carriers will be operated by the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI).


LNG World News Staff

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