MV Papua arrives in PNG

THE PNG LNG project’s first custom-built carrier arrived in Papua New Guinea yesterday to load its first-ever cargo destined for customers in Asia.

With a capacity to haul 172,000 cubic metres of LNG, the MV Papua docked at the project's marine facilities to begin cool down and the loading of the LNG into its hold.

Exxon Mobil PNG managing director Andrew Barry said he was excited to see the ship being prepared for its inaugural LNG delivery.

"We are already off to an exciting start to 2015 with our first custom-built ship preparing to load its first cargo, which will be shipped to Sinopec," he said.

"The arrival of this ship supports our objectives to safely and reliably deliver LNG to our customers."

The carrier was built in Shanghai, China, by Hudong-Zhongua Ship Building. It is the largest LNG carrier ever to be built in the country and is owned by the Aquarius LNG Shipping Ltd, along with joint venture partners Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), China Shipping Group and Sinopec.

During the Christening ceremony, PNG ambassador to China Christopher Mero said the new ship would have a big impact on the country's economy.

"We now have a Papua New Guinea workforce with knowledge, skills and the capacities and provide us with a rich depth of talent pool to draw from the future development of the country," he said.

"We hope the experience we gained in dealing with Exxon Mobil and its partners will be utilised to reach our full potential and to capitalise on the many opportunities that lie ahead."

MOL is operating the MV Papua on behalf of the PNG LNG joint venture, on the direction of Exxon Mobil PNG.

There are four dedicated PNG LNG project carriers - The Spirit of Hela, Gigira Laitebo, Papua and one other still under construction.

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