MSC Cruises and Chantiers de l’Atlantique have agreed to build a third and fourth LNG-powered ‘World’ class ships.
The yard and MSC also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the development of a new prototype class of four LNG-powered cruise ships to operate under the MSC Cruises brand.
For this project, MSC Cruises, Chantiers de l’Atlantique and other partners will focus on developing emerging environmental technologies in line with IMO’s vision for 2030 and 2050.
The four vessels in this new class would represent a capital investment exceeding €4 bill and an extra 30 mill working hours for the yard, the suppliers and sub-contractors involved in the project.
A second MoU saw MSC Cruises partnering with Chantiers de l’Atlantique in the development of another innovative prototype ship class concept with which they will explore opportunities that wind power and other advanced technologies could bring to passenger shipping.
The firm contracts for ‘World’ class ships three and four represent a capital investment by MSC Cruises exceeding €2 bill and are expected to generate with the shipyard and its suppliers 14 mill additional working hours, amounting to over 2,400 full-time equivalent jobs for the next three and a half years, directly supported by those orders.
Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman, MSC Cruises, said: “The three agreements signed today extend our investment plan up to 2030. They stem from an exceptional partnership, with Chantiers, that has already delivered 15 highly-innovative innovative cruise ships over the past two decades and will see many more vessels come to life at Saint-Nazaire’s docks in the next 10 years.
“They also confirm that this industry’s commitment to environmental sustainability, in this case helping the French national industry further position itself as a world leader in the development of next-generation technologies and other solutions,” he said.
Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, added: “We are really proud and happy to have built such an outstanding relationship with MSC Cruises, based on mutual trust and driven by the spirit of innovation. We are both committed to shaping the cruise of tomorrow and to developing ship concepts which go far beyond the existing environmental standards. Our companies have already been working together for twenty years and these new projects allow us to look enthusiastically to the future.”