New group targets 50 LNG ships by 2019

25 Jun 2014
AG Ems LNG ferry Ostfriesland - due into service November

AG Ems LNG ferry 'Ostfriesland' - due into service November

A new Germany-based maritime body promoting LNG propulsion in shipping has set a target of five years for the introduction of at least 50 more ships fitted or retro-fitted for LNG use, writes Tom Todd.

The Maritime LNG Platform, based in Berlin and Hamburg, said, among other things, that it wanted to see at least five further ports in Germany equipped to handle and supply such ships.

The new group lists 17 prominent members in the maritime industry, shipping and ports and is hoping to increase that to 50 members within its first year.

Among those already on board are shipping companies AG Ems, DS Schiffahrt and TUI Cruises and leading German port operators Hamburg Port Authority, bremenports, Lower Saxony Ports and the ports of Brunsbüttel. Others include industrial, power and maritime sector concerns like Wärtsilä, MAN Diesel and Turbo, Shell Deutschland, Bomin Linde LNG, Gasunie and Greenplug.

Platform chairman Mahinde Abeynaike, head of Bomin Linde LNG, said: “The target of establishing innovative and eco-friendly technology can only be achieved if we act together”. The presence of competitors among group’s members underscored the determination to do this, he added.

Platform member AG Ems is currently building what is billed as Europe’s first passenger ferry newbuilding with LNG propulsion at Fassmer Werft for delivery next year. AG Ems is also retro-fitting and converting a second ferry Ostfriesland at BVT for LNG propulsion from November.

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