Algoma Expands to Europe for Product Tankers in JV with Furetank

short sea climate friendly tankers in Northern Europe
Furetank currently is operating eight ships in the class with more on order (Furetank)

Published Aug 16, 2022 7:23 PM by The Maritime Executive

Swedish Furetank and Canadian Algoma Central Corporation are forming a new joint venture designed to expand the operation of climate-friendly tankers in Northern Europe. The companies are ordering four dual-fuel product tankers that will be operated by Furetank in the short sea shipping market.

The vessels will be constructed at China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Yangzhou, China, with delivery expected between 2023 and 2025. The vessels will be 17,999 dwt product tankers specially designed by Furetank in collaboration with FKAB Marine Design. In addition to having ice class 1A ratings, energy efficiency will be at the forefront of the planning process for the new vessels.

“We are pleased to welcome aboard Algoma and combine our companies’ symbols to create the FureBear joint venture,” said Lars Höglund, CEO of Furetank. “These vessels will be top-performers in the market by offering efficient cargo operations all while reducing our environmental footprint.”

Furetank has been building its Vinga class vessels as the next generation of environmentally friendly ships. The series of vessels were designed by Furetank and FKAB Marine Design in collaboration with Wärtsilä, with the aim of reducing fuel consumption as much as possible. The sister ships all have dual-fuel capability and run on LNG/LBG or gasoil. They are designed with a battery hybrid solution and several innovative features that reduce fuel and energy consumption, resulting in extensively lower emissions of CO2, sulfur oxide, nitrogen oxide, and hazardous particles. They are also fully equipped for shore power. In July, the company announced that it had ordered the next vessel for the class which would number 11 in the company's fleet of climate friendly tankers.

The additional vessels to be built for the new FureBear JV will be sisters to the Vinga series currently trading in the Gothia Tanker Alliance launched by Furetank. When they enter service they will be added to the pool.

“This investment will enable us to continue on our strategic path to diversify geographically and into niche short sea markets,” said Gregg Ruhl, President and CEO of Algoma Central Corporation. “Short sea shipping is our core DNA here at Algoma and these specialized, environmentally conscious vessels will fit naturally into our expanding global fleet.”

Algoma currently owns and operates the largest fleet of dry and liquid bulk carriers operating on the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Seaway. Having introduced 10 newbuild vessels to its domestic dry-bulk fleet, with two under construction and expected to arrive in 2024, the company focuses on self-unloading dry-bulk carriers, gearless dry-bulk carriers, and product tankers. In addition to the JV with Furetank, they have a second 50 percent investment in NovaAlgoma, which owns and operates the world's largest fleet of pneumatic cement carriers and a global fleet of mini-bulk vessels serving regional markets.