Cuba’s Empresa Importadora General del Transporte (EIGT) has taken delivery of the last of ten 35,000gt bulk carriers ordered from China’s Shanghai Shipyard Co Ltd on behalf of Grupo Acemex. The ship purchases, estimated at $250 million ‘en bloc’, were financed by China’s Eximbank, and their export was handled by the Chinese state company, ChinaNational Machinery Import &Export Corporation (CMC).
The ten-ship order was placed by Cuba in September 2009, principally to lower the cost of its grain imports, as foreign shipowners had been charging a premium to carry cargoes to the island nation because the US prohibits ships coming from Cuba to dock at US ports. The crane-equipped newbuildings, which have a service speed of about 13 knots, will be used to serve Cuba’s trading partners, including Iran, Ecuador and Angola. JS