American Eagle Tankers (AET) has ordered eight product and crude tankers from two South Korean yards for delivery in 2017 and 2018.
No contract values for individual vessels were disclosed, but AET said the combined value of the eight orders is around $500m.
Four 113,000-dwt aframax tankers will be built at Samsung Heavy Industries for delivery in 2018. The contract was signed on Tuesday.
Hyundai Heavy Industries is to build two 114,000-dwt LR2 product tankers and two 158,000-dwt suezmaxes for AET, all of which will be delivered in 2017. The two parties signed off the deal today.
The LR2s already have “long-term” charters in places to a “strategic oil major client”, AET said today.
The six other newbuildings have been ordered to replace AET’s older tonnage, the company explained. AET’s current fleet consists of 55 vessels, of which 40 are aframaxes. Eleven of these aframaxes are aged 15 years or older.
All eight vessels will be built to fuel-efficient designs, which AET says will enable them to be awarded the ‘green passport’ notation. They will also be fitted with IMO-compliant ballast water management systems.
“As a leading operator of petroleum tankers, it is important that our fleet remains young and agile so that we retain the capability to react to the evolving requirements of our customers. Part of that commitment is ensuring our new vessels are the best in class, providing a sustainable level of service to our customers,” Captain Rajalingam Subramaniam, one of AET’s directors, said in a statement.
Yee Yang Chien, president and group CEO of parent company MISC, said his group would continue to invest in the subsidiary: “AET is a core part of MISC’s future business strategy and these two contracts demonstrates MISC’s commitment to ensuring our petroleum subsidiary remains at the forefront of its sector.”