GAIL wants bids for LNG shipbuilding
Currently, there are no Indian shipyards that have been involved in the construction of LNG carriers
In a first such tender for promoting the construction in this country of ships to carry liquefied natural gas (LNG), GAIL India has called for bids. It wants applications from companies holding a minimum 25 per cent equity for seven years in three such operational vessels.
Currently, there are no Indian shipyards that have been involved in the construction of LNG carriers. Those which bid would need a contractual agreement with a shipyard abroad which has constructed and delivered at least one LNG vessel with a capacity of at least 135,000 cubic metes in the preceding 10 years. The vessel must have been in service for at least one year prior to the bid. There are also various technical requirements for the Indian shipyards involved.
State-owned GAIL needs vessels for importing LNG from the US in a 20-year contract that begins September 2017. It plans to leverage the burgeoning import requirement to facilitate local expertise in vessel construction. The potential bidders are required to bid for three vessels at least, in one lot, and one of the three ships will be constructed at an Indian shipyard.
LNG vessels owned by the bidder should have been operational for a minimum of two years. For joint ventures or consortium bids, the total number of members cannot be greater than four, including the leader. The leader of the consortium would be required to be the largest shareholder in at least one LNG vessel out of the lot of three. Again, technical specifications apply.
For both single-party as well as the consortium leader bidding for one lot, the requisite annual turnover is pegged at $45 million in any one of the preceding three financial years. Other consortium members should have had an annual turnover of half of that applicable for the leader in the same frame of time. There are various other financial details in the tender.