The program is expected to drive the Brazilian shipbuilding industry by chartering, for 15-year terms, vessels built by Brazilian companies, at shipyards and operating in Brazil. The program also requires the vessels to sail under the Brazilian flag for the duration of the contract.
The initiative was created after Petrobras carried out a series of study’s on their shipping needs for the 2010-2020 period. The study’s showed the need for combining vessel construction in Brazilian shipyards with their respective offer for charter by Brazilian shipping companies. The goal was to strengthen the domestic industry and carry on with the renovation of the fleet controlled by Petrobras’ Downstream Area.
Nineteen vessels were engaged in the first phase of the program (EBN1), which was completed in May 2010. Some 40 companies took part in it, and upwards of 30 business proposals were submitted. The vessels hired in this first phase are slated for delivery between 2012 and 2014.
In 2010, after the successful completion of the first phase, seeking to reduce dependence on the foreign market in order to meet the coastal shipping needs, and with the growing demand for vessels for this type of transport in mind, Petrobras rolled-out the second phase of the program (EBN2), which provides for the hiring of 20 more ships in the same model as the previous stage. Thirty-eight companies took part in the final stage of the second phase, and over 30 proposals were put forward.
It is estimated that the program will help create about 30,000 direct and indirect jobs during construction and in excess of 2,000 permanent jobs over the life of the vessels.