Chowgule wins $82-m electric hybrid vessel order from Swedish firm

The new vessels will be delivered from the third quarter of 2023

AtoB@C Shipping AB, the Swedish unit of Finland’s ESL Shipping Ltd, has ordered a series of six highly energy-efficient electric hybrid vessels from Chowgule and Company Pvt Ltd in a deal worth €70 million ($82 million).

This is a breakthrough order for an Indian shipyard as the global shipping industry increasingly focusses on efforts to decarbonise the industry to combat climate change.

AtoB@C Shipping has the option to expand the order with more such ships of 5,350 dead weight tonmes (DWT) capacity each, said ESL Shipping, a top carrier of dry bulk cargoes in the Baltic Sea region. ESL Shipping is a part of Aspo, a Finnish conglomerate listed on the Helsinki stock exchange.

Market leaders:

These new 1A ice class vessels will be market leaders in terms of cargo capacity, technology, and innovation, it said.

The greenhouse gas emissions, including CO2 per cargo unit transported, will decrease by almost 50 per cent compared to the existing ships, making the vessels the most efficient in the world in their class.

The vessels’ battery packs, shore-side electricity solution and electric hybrid use enable emission-free and noise-free port calls. Ships can also arrive and leave the port with electric power only.

The new vessels will be delivered from the third quarter of 2023.

The yard is part of the family-owned Chowgule Group founded in 1916, and has vast experience in building ships of similar size for several European clients.

The design work of the ships and comprehensive model tests have been carried out together with the Dutch SMB Naval Architects.

The company has been closely involved in the design of the vessels and has tailored the vessels to customer needs.

Special attention has been paid to the energy efficiency and arrangements of cargo spaces. “Together with the shipbuilder Chowgule and AtoB@C Shipping, we will make shipping even more environmentally friendly,” said Mikki Koskinen, Managing Director, ESL Shipping and Chairman of the Board of AtoB@C Shipping.

“With this order, we are able to offer our customers environmentally-friendly transports and respond to the growing demand. This order will also secure us eco-friendly and modern capacity in the coming years,” said Frida Rowland, Business Unit Director, AtoB@C Shipping.

Financial assistance:

The order placed by AtoB@C Shipping with Chowgule will benefit from a financial assistance scheme offered by the government to shipbuilders that will run till 2025.

The scheme took effect from April 2016 and the assistance is currently available at 17 per cent of the contract price or the fair price, whichever is lower, as determined by international valuers for any vessel built in India.