Proman Stena Bulk Orders Methanol-ready Tankers

Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI) in China will build two IMOIIMeMAX methanol-ready 49,900 deadweight tonnage vessels for Proman Stena Bulk. It is the first deal signed by the newly-created joint venture between Swedish Stena Bulk and the Swiss-based Proman Shipping.

Following extensive development and towing tank tests by GSI and Stena Bulk, the IMOIIMeMAX line of vessels are said to be among the most energy efficient mid-range tankers. Both vessels will be fitted with dual-fuel engines and run on methanol, which is emerging as one of the most viable, low emission and cost-effective marine fuel alternatives. Each vessel will utilise an estimated 12,500 metric tonnes of methanol per year.

‘GSI has a proven track record with their thirteen previous IMOIIMAX vessels for Stena Bulk, and we are very pleased to have reached this agreement with them to build our pioneering new methanol tankers,’ says David Cassidy, Chief Executive of Proman. ‘Methanol is a readily available liquid fuel that meets the strictest emissions criteria, and it has huge global potential as a proven substitute for conventional bunker fuels, as well as more widely for power generation and as a high-octane addition to the gasoline fuel pool.’

The first vessel is due for delivery at the beginning of 2022. The two ships will be fifty-fifty owned and then on long term charter to Proman Shipping after delivery.

Methanol: Cleaner and CAPEX Advantages

Methanol is available at over 100 ports around the world and boasts significant Capital Expenditures (CAPEX) and safety advantages to comparable alternatives such as LNG. It offers a clear pathway towards meeting the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) commitment to cut carbon emissions from the shipping sector by forty per cent from 2008 levels by 2030, and overall greenhouse gas emissions by fifty per cent by 2050. Compared with regular marine fuel, methanol offers more than 95 per cent reduction in sulphur oxide (SOx) and particulate matter, and a sixty per cent reduction in nitrogen oxides (NOx).

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.