QatarEnergy Enters Agreement with Ship Owners to Operate 9 LNG Vessels

Published on: 

The long-term time charter party (TCP) agreements with China Merchants Group, Shandong Marine Group, and China LNG Shipping (CLNG) cover the operation of nine QC-Max LNG vessels.

As part of QatarEnergy’s LNG fleet expansion program, the company signed long-term TCP agreements with three Chinese ship owners to operate nine QC-Max size LNG vessels, each with a capacity of 271,000 m3.

“Our partnerships with China’s shipbuilding industry and the esteemed shipowners, will ensure the long-term operation, deployment, and management of these vessels in a manner that maximizes their potential over decades to come,” said Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi, CEO of QatarEnergy. “As we build this partnership, I am reminded of the trust and collaboration that characterizes our relationship, which I believe will continue to grow and flourish as we place more building blocks along the way.”

CMES will operate four vessels, Shandong Marine Energy will operate three vessels, and CLNG will operate the remaining two vessels. The nine LNG vessels will be constructed at the Hudong-Zhonghua shipyards in China.


These vessels are part of a larger deal signed by QatarEnergy and China State Shipbuilding Corp. earlier this week. The companies signed a nearly $6 billion agreement to construct 18 QC-max size LNG vessels with a capacity of 271,000 m3. Eight of the vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2028 and 2029, while the remaining 10 will be delivered in 2030 and 2031.

“It is our honor to continue working with China State Shipbuilding Corporation and Hudong-Zhonghua Shipyard to develop and build some of the top-tier LNG vessels renowned for their exceptional environmental qualities,” said Al-Kaabi. “And as we take this important step together, I would like to affirm QatarEnergy’s determination to live up to our commitment to provide a safe and reliable energy source in the form of LNG, while always giving priority to environmental sustainability.”

The buildout of QatarEnergy’s LNG fleet is driven by Qatar’s goal to expand LNG production capacity. In February 2024, QatarEnergy announced that work is currently underway at a new LNG expansion project, North Field West, to increase Qatar’s LNG production capacity to 142 MTPA before the end of 2030. This production increase is approximately 85% higher than current Qatari production levels.

Al-Kaabi said, “These nine vessels are part of QatarEnergy’s historic program to support our expanded LNG production capacity from the North Field and will also help meet our long-term fleet replacement requirements.”

He announced that extensive appraisal drilling and testing have confirmed productive layers of Qatar’s North Field extend towards the west, which allows for the development of a new LNG production project in Ras Laffan. The CEO also announced the presence of large additional gas quantities in the North Field estimated at 240 trillion cubic feet, which raises Qatar’s gas reserves from 1,760 to more than 2,000 trillion cubic feet. Condensate reserves were also raised from 70 to more than 80 billion barrels, in addition to quantities of liquefied petroleum gas, ethane, and helium.