Date of launching first vessel at Azerbaijan's new shipyard set

Azerbaijan, Baku, April 2 / Trend E.Ismayilov /

The State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) plans to complete construction of a new shipbuilding and repair plant in Baku and launch of first vessel into the sea in the first half of 2013, SOCAR President Rovnag Abudllayev said on Saturday.

A tender for the construction of the plant has already been announced and all the tender documents prepared. The tender is expected to be summed up in April.

Abdullayev said the new shipyard will meet the needs of Azerbaijan and the Caspian countries in the vessels. However, first, the vessels manufactured at the new plant will be designed for updating Azerbaijan's seacraft.

The volume of investment in the plant construction is $450 million.

SOCAR President Rovnag Abdullayev, Azerbaijan Investment Company (AIC) head Afgan Isayev and Keppel CEO Tong Chong Heong undersigned the agreement to establish the shipyard in December 2010.

Under the contract, the equity division in the enterprise will be distributed as follows: SOCAR -- 65 percent, AIC -- 25 percent and Keppel -- 10 percent.

Keppel will also be entitled to increase its stake by another 10 percent over the next three years.

The foundation of the new plant was laid on March 19 with the participation of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.

The British Royal Haskoning company and the Dutch TT are performing the design activities. The preparatory work for construction was launched in parallel.

The plant's capacity is 25,000 tons of steel per year.

The plant will annually manufacture four oil tankers with a deadweight of 15,000 tons, as well as four marine maintenance and towing vessels.

The project's main objective is to build vessels required to meet the needs of the Caspian sea.

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