December 22 - Chinese-Polish Joint Stock Shipping (Chipolbrok) has taken delivery of the first in a series of four newbuild general cargo vessels - Chipolbrok Pacific - from Shanghai Shipyard.

HLPFI reported in February 2014 that Chipolbrok had signed a contract with the Chinese shipyard for the construction of four 32,000 dwt heavy lift vessels, with delivery scheduled for 2015 and 2016.

With the newbuilding programme, Chipolbrok explained that its goal is to gradually replace its older Szymanowski type vessels, which were built in between 1991 and 1998. The company added that it is more focused on replacing tonnage than growing its fleet due to the "tonnage overhang in the global heavy lift fleet".

Chipolbrok notes that the four newbuilds will surpass the shipping line's existing vessels in size, capacity, speed and lifting capabilities.

With overall lengths of 189.9 m and widths of 28 m, the new ships feature three 350-tonne capacity cranes and five hatches with access to three large cargo holds.

The vessels also have flat weather decks measuring around 2,795 sq m without any obstacles onboard, meaning that cargoes of up to 135 m long - such as offshore wind turbine blades and flare towers - can be easily carried.

The delivery of Chipolbrok Pacific will be followed by the delivery of its sisterships, Nowowiejski, Paderewski and Chipolbrok Atlantic in 2016.

Chiplobrok Pacific is currently loading project cargo at the ports of Shanghai, Changsu (China) and Kwangyang (Korea), before sailing on its maiden voyage via the Suez Canal to Europe, where it will unload cargo in Zeebrugge (Belgium) and Szczecin (Poland), as well as a number of other European ports.

In February 2016, the vessel will return to Southeast Asia and the Far East.