February 23, 2006
Stolt to double skin three tankers
Stolt-Nielsen S.A. subsidiary, Stolt-Nielsen Transportation Group (SNTG), has exercised an option to acquire three product/chemical tankers--currently on time charter--at a total option price of approximately $40 million.
The three ships are to be converted, at a total cost of about $7.5 million, to double-skin configuration in order to meet Marpol Annex II regulations taking effect January 1, 2007.
The three ships, each 40,000 deadweight tons with 20 epoxy coated tanks, are: Montana Blue, built 1991; Montana Star, built 1992; and Montana Sun, built 1994. The ships were chartered in December 2001 from Montana Ship Holding AS, with an option to acquire at any time.
Otto H. Fritzner, Chief Executive Officer of SNTG, said the ships will give the company "the ability to capitalize on the good growth prospects forecast for the large, simple segment of the parcel tanker market. Converting these ships is also an economical solution to fleet expansion at a time when the cost of new buildings remains near historic highs.''