Hamburg-based chemical tanker operator John T. Essberger is set to acquire eight new tankers as part of its plans to modernize its fleet with ships that can increase energy efficiency by 30 percent.
The company announced that it has signed final agreements with China Merchants Jinling Shipyard to build four 6,600 dwt stainless steel parcel chemical tankers, with options for an additional four vessels.
The new ships will be operated by E&S Tankers, a joint venture between Essberger and Stolt Nielsen. Last November, the partners announced plans to invest about $200 million in a fleet of new modern ships.
The newbuilding project is being subsidized by the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure as part of the implementation of the German government’s Mobility and Fuel Strategy (MKS) with a total of $1.9 million per vessel.
“With this significant investment in the future, our owners have shown their commitment and determination to deliver on their promise to offer our valued customers a long-term high quality service with a greener footprint at competitive conditions,” said Jan Eghoej, John T. Essberger Managing Director.
The stainless steel tankers will all have dual-fuel liquefied natural gas propulsion and certified Finnish/Swedish 1A ice class. The new vessels will be built with optimized hull forms and equipment, resulting in an energy efficiency improvement of at least 30 percent, along with the ability to use shore power connections during cargo operations.
The newbuildings are expected to be delivered from mid-2023 and will be operated by E&S Tankers to initiate the fleet renewal, which demonstrates full commitment to the European short-sea chemical market.
E&S Tankers currently operates 48 parcel tankers ranging from 2,800 to 11,300 dwt, all in the European market. Essberger intends to utilize the new vessels to consolidate its market share at a time when the global chemical tanker market is projected to increase from $26.4 billion in 2020 to $33.4 billion in 2025 – a five percent compounded annual growth rate.
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