No one seems to have told Imabari Shipbuilding that Japanese yards are on the decline. The shipbuilder, which has surpassed South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries into third place in terms of global orderbook lately, is embarking on further expansion.
Imabari will reclaim around 50,000 sq m of land around its Saijo Shipyard to help it boost manufacturing of large LNG carriers and mega containerships.
It follows on from news early last year that the leading Japanese shipbuilder would expand its Marugame shipbuilding base, adding an extra 600 m long drydock. This new drydock is expected to start operations in October this year.
Imabari has also added a 1,200 ton Goliath crane at its Hiroshima Shipyard in order to build larger boxships.
As well as the additional merchant shipbuilding capabilities Imabari is adding to its yards, analysts suggest Imabari is beefing up facilities to build significant volumes of navy vessels, possibly including aircraft carriers.