Canadian shipping company Algoma Central Corporation has entered into construction contracts with Jiangsu Yangzijiang Shipbuilding for two 740 foot Seaway Max self-unloading bulk freighters to join the company’s Great Lakes – St. Lawrence Waterway dry-bulk fleet.
The contracts were made effective with the delivery of refund guarantees by the shipyard on Monday.
These new Equinox Class ships will feature a standard rear boom, boasting an overall length of 225.55 metres and a beam of 23.77 metres. The vessels are designed to carry 29,300 tonnes at maximum Seaway draft.
“Our search for a shipyard in China to replace the now-bankrupt Nantong Mingde Heavy Industries (Mingde) led us to Yangzijiang,” said Ken Bloch Soerensen, President and CEO of Algoma.
The vessels are scheduled for delivery in the first half of 2018.
This new order brings the total Equinox Class vessels under construction to seven. In total, Algoma expects to invest approximately $450 million in this phase of its fleet renewal program. With the addition of these new ship orders, Algoma said that it was reviewing its fleet plan and considering the retirement of certain older vessels.
Upon completion of these seven new vessel orders in 2018, the average life of the Company’s dry-bulk fleet will be reduced by 13 years from the 31 year age of the current fleet.