Novatek, Russia’s largest independent natural gas producer, has signed long-term charter deals for six Arc7 ice-class LNG tankers.

The charter deal was signed with compatriot shipper Sovcomflot and Japan’s Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL).

The construction of the tankers has been entrusted to the South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME).

Novatek added that with the latest deal the Arctic LNG 2 project has completed the chartering of the required ice-class tanker fleet.

To remind, Novatek has previously signed a charter deal for 15 similar LNG carriers that will be built at the Zvezda shipyard in Russia.

Arctic LNG 2 envisages constructing three LNG liquefaction trains of 6.6 million tons per annum each, as well as a cumulative gas condensate production capacity of 1.6 million tons per annum.

The total LNG capacity of the three liquefaction trains will be 19.8 million tons.

The project utilizes a construction concept using gravity-based structure (GBS) platforms to reduce overall capital cost and minimize the project’s environmental footprint in the Arctic zone of Russia.

The project’s participants include Novatek (60 per cent), Total (10 per cent), CNPC (10 per cent), CNOOC (10 per cent) and the consortium of Mitsui and JOGMEC (10 per cent).

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