January 18 - MacGregor, part of Cargotec, has secured a new contract to deliver 12 heavy lift cranes, each with a 450-tonne capacity, to six Ecolift F900 vessels being built at two Chinese shipyards - Hudong and Huangpu Wenchong.

The 13,300 dwt vessels, which will be owned by China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) Leasing, will be chartered out to US heavy lift shipping line Intermarine on a long-term basis. Peter Döhle will be responsible for technical ship management.

HLPFI reported in October 2015 that Intermarine had confirmed the order for six new heavy lift vessels, each of which will feature two cranes with a combined lifting capacity of 900 tonnes. Options remain for a further four multipurpose vessels.

"This is a significant contract for MacGregor, representing important next steps into the heavy lift market," said Mattias Sundström, sales and marketing director for general cargo ships at MacGregor.

"MacGregor is also delivering deck machinery from our Hatlapa range, as well as the Porsgrunn steering gear for these vessels."

Frank Fischer, managing director of tonnage procurement at Intermarine, added: "The vessels are an efficient upgrade to our existing bridge-forward F-Class ships. They have the advantage of better stability, larger holds, improved cranes and reduced consumption."

Delivery of the new vessels will begin in the summer of 2017 and continue throughout 2018. Hudong will build four vessels with options for two more; while Huangpu Wenchong will build two vessels, also with options for an additional two. Crane deliveries are scheduled to start at the end of 2016.