China Rongsheng Heavy Industries this week christened the first two 380,000 DWT Very Large Ore Carriers (VLOCs) built for Oman Shipping Company, as well as delivered the third such vessel to Vale S.A.
The two VLOCs for Oman Shipping, named the “Vale Sohar” and “Vale Liwa”, are the first vessels to be christened of the eight VLOCs ordered by the company in 2009. The vessels are set for sea trials and are expected to be delivered soon. They will be chartered to Vale in support of the mining giant’s iron ore trade between Brazil and Oman.
The VLOC delivered to Vale S.A., the “Vale Dalian”, is the second vessel of its type to be delivered to Vale this year by China Rongsheng Heavy Industries, and the third overall. The first VLOC, the “Vale China”, was delivered to the company in November 2011. The vessels are part of a US$1.6 billion order placed by Vale in 2008 calling for the construction of twelve VLOCs.
“Oman Shipping and Vale are the important strategic partners of China Rongsheng Heavy Industries,” said Chen Qiang, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of China Rongsheng Heavy Industries. “The christening of the two vessels has reiterated the close and smooth partnership between the three parties. The advances in construction experience, technologies and production efficiency have also further enhanced the construction and delivery plan of VLOCs.”
The 380,000 DWT vessels are the largest dry bulk carriers in the world and measure 360 meters long by 65 meters wide. The vessels technically have a capacity up to 400,000 DWT but have been downgraded by China Rongsheng Heavy Industries, at least on paper, in order to cool concerns amongst Chinese officials that the ships are too big to enter China’s ports.
Vale, either directly or indirectly, has ordered a total of 35 of these monster ships to built at DSME in South Korea and China Rongsheng Heavy Industries.