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Inpex-operated Ichthys LNG project celebrates naming ceremony for LNG Tanker

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Inpex has announced that a naming ceremony was held for the LNG tanker that will transport approximately 0.9 million tpy of LNG produced by the Inpex-operated Ichthys LNG project to Inpex’s Naoetsu LNG terminal in Joetsu, Niigata Prefecture, Japan.

This ceremony took place today at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ (MHI) Nagasaki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Nagasaki, Japan.

The LNG tanker is the second vessel that will be chartered by the Inpex Group to transport Ichthys-produced LNG following the Pacific Breeze, for which a naming ceremony was celebrated on 1 September 2017.

The naming ceremony was attended by numerous distinguished guests associated with the Ichthys LNG Project, and the LNG tanker was named Oceanic Breeze. Inpex President & CEO Toshiaki Kitamura also attended the ceremony as the vessel’s godfather.

The LNG tanker is owned by Oceanic Breeze LNG Transport S.A. (OBLT), a joint venture between Inpex Shipping Co., Ltd. (30%) and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. (K-Line) (70%), and was newly built based on a construction agreement between OBLT and MHI. Through Inpex Shipping, Inpex has entered into a time charter agreement for this tanker with OBLT. The tanker is scheduled to be deployed in conjunction with the startup of LNG shipments from the Ichthys LNG Project.

The LNG tanker has a 155 300 m3 tank capacity and features the ‘sayaendo’ (peapod) design incorporated in MHI’s newest class of LNG tankers where MOSS-type spherical tanks are shielded by an outer cover integrated with the hull. This feature helps strengthen the tanker’s overall structure, reduces weight and significantly cuts down on resistance from wind pressure during operations. The tanker is also equipped with a new type of steam turbine propulsion unit that uses reheated steam to power the main engine, slashing fuel consumption by a considerable margin compared to conventional turbine vessels and raising expectations for lower CO2 emissions and transportation costs.

The handover of the tanker improves the state of readiness to transport the LNG produced from the Ichthys LNG Project, and further accelerates the strengthening of Inpex’s gas supply chain, which links overseas natural gas sources starting with the Ichthys LNG Project with the domestic gas market and is positioned as one of the company’s growth targets as outlined in the medium to long-term vision.

Inpex will continue to work toward the success of the Ichthys LNG project with the understanding and cooperation of all its stakeholders, including its joint venture partners, the local communities, the Australian federal government and the governments of Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

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