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Poland Takes Delivery of Two LNG Ships From South Korea

LNG carrier
Image courtesy of Orlen Group

Published Dec 18, 2022 5:25 PM by The Maritime Executive

Poland has taken the delivery of two South Korean gas carriers ordered by the country's state-owned PKN Orlen energy group in a bid to import LNG, primarily from the United States, Orlen CEO Daniel Obajtek announced on Wednesday.

The first ship was named after the late Professor Lech Kaczynski, President of the Republic of Poland, and the second after the late Grazyna Gesicka, Minister of Regional Development, for their commitment to Poland's energy independence and the country's economic development. 

For its energy security, Poland wants to diversify the oil and natural gas supply – the latter already one hundred percent imported from outside Russia. This is the result of a consistently implemented LNG import strategy. As a result, the shipments of liquefied natural gas already cover almost thirty percent of Poland's demand.

"In Ulsan, Korea, we took delivery of two of the eight LNG carriers ordered by the Orlen Group," Obajtek wrote in a tweet. "Our fleet will enable us to import LNG primarily from the US efficiently. Marine supplies already cover approximately 30 percent of the country's demand and are Poland's most important gas source next to the Baltic Pipe."

The vessels, chartered by Poland's state-owned PGNiG oil and gas company from Orlen, will be owned and operated by Norwegian company Knutsen, state news agency PAP reported. PGNiG has signed charter agreements for a total of eight carriers, which Hyundai Heavy Industries in Ulsan, South Korea, will build. Each vessel is nearly 300 meters long and will carry 174,000 cubic meters of LNG, or about 70,000 metric tons of liquefied natural gas.

By the end of 2025, the number of LNG carriers will increase to eight. The first two vessels will start operating in 2023. Two more gas carriers will be delivered in 2024 and another four in 2025.