Chinese and Japanese shipyards have gained 10 new tug construction orders as Asian industry returns to work after the coronavirus outbreak
Shipyards are returning to productivity after slowdowns in recent months as industry workers battled coronavirus.
In Japan, a leading tug builder has secured new construction contracts from domestic owners and a multi-vessel export order. Kanagawa Zosen secured contracts for five tugs with three of these destined for India and the other two for Japanese harbour work.
India-headquartered Adani Group returned to Kanagawa for three new harbour tugs, for deliveries in H2 2022. The 495-gt vessels will have an overall length of 34.5 m and breadth of 11.4 m, according to BRL Shipping Consultants.
These are in addition to orders from Adani Group in 2019 for seven 34.5-m harbour tugs scheduled for delivery between June 2020 and December 2021.
India needs more powerful tugs as its ports expand and prepare to assist larger container ships, tankers and gas carriers.
Kanagawa Zosen also secured newbuilding contracts from domestic owners, with one each from Kawasaki Kisen and Fukushima Kisen. These will both have two Niigata diesel main engines with power ratings of 2,040 kW, according to BRL.
Kawasaki Kisen’s order is for a tug with an overall length of 38 m, breadth of 10.2 m, with delivery slated for July 2020.
Construction of the 32.5-m tug ordered by Fukushima Kisen will be well advanced as it is scheduled for delivery in September 2020.
In addition, Kanagawa Zosen is building a 290-gt, 40-m harbour tug for Kaisho Marine, with delivery due in Q3 2020. The shipyard has benefited from tugs ordered to renew Japan’s ageing tugboat fleet with new technology and greater power to handle larger ships.
In China, Guangzhou Shunhai shipyard has won contracts to build two 487-gt harbour tugs to undisclosed domestic owners. The 34-m tugs will each have two Yanmar diesel main engines with power ratings of 2,584 kW and draught of 4.1 m.
Jiangsu Zhenjiang Shipyard started constructing two new azimuth stern drive (ASD) tugs on 29 March. These will become 2,980-kW powered tugboats built for ZhenJiang Port Tug Co and YangZhou Port Tug Co.
Further down the construction line, Zhenjiang Shipyard laid the keel for a 3,680-kW ASD tugboat for Zhenjiang Port Group on 22 March.
Tug newbuilding orders have bolstered global orderbooks with almost 280 tugs on order at shipyards worldwide. However, there has been an impact from the coronavirus and a lull in new orders, as this is down from 300 tug newbuilding orders in Q3 2019.
Tug construction resumption in China comes as the city thought to be the source of Covid-19, Wuhan, partially reopened to residents after more than two months of isolation.
Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, recorded more than 50,000 coronavirus cases in total, and at least 3,000 people in Hubei died from the illness.