On 1st April, 2013, Imabari Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. (Imabri) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) will establish a joint venture company MI LNG Company, Limited (MI LNG) for the purpose of designing and marketing of LNG carrier.
MI LNG will become the window for marketing of LNG carriers to be built by Imabari and MHI. The building capacity of both shipyards will be eight (8) ships in total per year, which makes us enable to construct a large number of vessels in a short period, and to respond flexibly to LNG Carrier new building enquiry coming along with increasing demand for LNG including shale gas etc.
Imabari has concluded a license agreement with GTT in the year 2000, developed new vessel design with membrane-tank method Mark-III system, and in 2008, constructed 1st 154,000m3 LNG carrier, largest at the time in the world. By adopting trapezoidal tank for the first time as Mark-III system, the vessel has increased tank capacity with slim-lined hull shape, which gave higher competitiveness to the vessel.
The company has been continuously deploying the marketing, investigation on new technology such as ME-GI engine and Mark-III Flex system, study on new Panama Canal and varied trade pattern of LNG. Nowadays, Imabari is developing new design of 178,000m3 LNG carrier with ME-GI system.
During more than 110 years history since its foundation, Imabari has constructed more than 2,000 vessels of various type, including 300,000dwt Ore Carrier, 8,100teu Container Carrier, Sulfuric Acid/Ore carrier (2nd in the world) and coastal Ferry etc.
In 2015, the company is to build 14,000teu Container Carriers, now the largest size to be built in Japan.
Last year, the company has concluded a technical collaboration agreement with MHI for container carrier, and jointly secured new building order for next generation type 7,000units PCTC, thus business relationship between Imabari and MHI has been strengthening. Through the establishment of MI LNG, the company will further strengthen the relationship with MHI who has advanced technology, and will pursue development and construction of highly value- added new building vessels, even under the difficult business environment.