By MALUM NALU
Ok Tedi Mining Ltd (OTML) will bring in four brand-new ships worth up to K120 million over the next 12 months to carry bulk ore out of Kiunga, Western province, as well as bring in general cargo.
Manager of V-Ships (PNG), Jesse Som, revealed this in an interview with The National last weekend.
An OTL spokesperson confirmed yesterday that the company would be bringing in four new ships.
V-Ships, the largest shipping fleet manager in the world, already looks after mv Fly Hope, Fly Explorer, and Fly Warrior for Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF) and will this year add the four OTML ships to its management.
|The port town of Kiunga, Western province, on the banks of the Fly River, where copper concentrate from Tabubil is piped in for export.-Picture by MALUM NALU|
“The OTML ships coming in, starting in June, are container ship Fly Reliance and bulk ore ships Fly Resilience, Fly Prosperity, and Fly Challenger,” Som said.
“They will be coming in between June and September 2013
“Three of them are being built at Patangas Slipway in Phillipines, and one is being built at Keppel in Singapore.
“While the three ships for OTDF were designed by a company called Shiptech, the four big ones for OTML have been designed by V-Ships subsidiary, Seatec.
“We (V-Ships) are designing, managing, and building the four vessels for OTML
“The four OTML ships will replace all the current OTML copper ships belonging to P&O, and Steamships.
“One of them will cost about K30m each,
“Ok Tedi will no longer hire ships from other companies like P&O and Steamships like it has been doing for the last 25 years.
“Ok Tedi’s going to save a huge amount of money by having its own ships.
“It costs about K60m annually use P&O.
“For the last 25 years, it’s been happening like that.
“That’s why I’m passionate about the project because at least we’re giving something back to the people of Western province and PNG.”
An OTML spokesperson said shipping was a vital and strategic component of the OTML supply chain.
“Both outbound saleable product and inbound materials essential to the mines’ operation move by sea and river on vessels chartered by OTML,” she said,
“Following a series of competitive sourcing activities in late 2010, OTML selected a naval architect for design, a shipyard for construction, and a ships manager to operate and maintain four new vessels - vital to our business.
“We pursued an option that was based on the acquisition of vessels jointly by OTML and OTDF, and a ships manager engaged to operate and maintain the vessels on the owner’s behalf.”
The spokesperson said the new vessels were purpose designed, optimised for Fly River conditions, including hull designs to reduce fuel consumption.