December 17 - Royal Boskalis Westminster (Boskalis) and Kotug International have signed a memorandum of understanding to merge their European harbour towage operations.

The companies will establish a 50/50 joint venture for this purpose, combining the harbour towage activities of Boskalis subsidiary SMIT in the Netherlands and Belgium, with Kotug's towage operations in Germany, the Netherlands and the UK.

The joint venture will serve 11 ports in four countries, with a fleet of more than 60 tugboats. 

This merger is the concluding step in Boskalis' strategy to establish regional partnerships for its harbour towage activities, as it has already done through Smit Lamnalco, Keppel SMIT and SAAM SMIT.