Keel laid for Pacific Island’s training vessel

A keel laying ceremony for a Pacific Island supply vessel, which will provide a trading, research and training platform for the Republic of the Marshall Islands, has taken place at Asia Shipbuilding Co, Geoje Island, South Korea.

Asia Shipbuilding Co.

As informed, the ceremony took place on 26 May. The consortium, consisting of Asia Shipbuilding Co. and naval design company Kostec, signed a contract with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH last July. The companies plan to deliver this innovative sailing cargo ship for the needs of the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

Asia Shipbuilding Co.

GIZ has been implementing the IKI (International Climate Initiative) financed program that is commissioned by the Federal German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV) jointly with the Marshall Islands’ Ministry for Transportation, Communication, and Information Technologies (MoTCIT) since 2017.

The aim is to support RMI’s ambitious target to cut down carbon dioxide emissions in the domestic sea transport sector. This is in line with the National Determined Contribution (NDC) target of achieving a transport-wide reduction of total domestic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 27% below 2010 levels by 2030 and transitioning to a low-carbon transport future.

Furthermore, the country has committed to reducing GHG emissions from domestic shipping by 40% below 2010 levels by 2030 and full decarbonization of the sector by 2050.

Earlier this year, the RMI Cabinet endorsed the Domestic Maritime Transport Roadmap, which lays out the path for net-zero sea transportation in the Marshall Islands until 2050.

“The keeling would be the start of the paradigm shift from conventional driven, solely engine propelled ships to a new generation of vessels for our islands in the larger Pacific Region,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Minister Kitlang Kabua said.

“The 48 m Sailing Cargo Vessels have been developed jointly with the Research Institute University of Applied Sciences Emden-Leer. In a joint effort, a new prototype-like vessel has been elaborated, including a modern and efficient sailing rig, PV units for the generation of electricity onboard and training areas for generations of future Marshallese Seaman,” Project Director Held stated.

After the keel laying ceremony, the shipyard will continue with the production of the vessel until the next milestone, launching in early October 2023.

The project is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI) funded project on Transitioning to Low Carbon Sea Transport. It also supports in delivery RMI’s Nationally Determined Contributions under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).