Shipowner Wah Kwong Maritime Transport Holdings, CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Company and China Gas Holdings have finally inked orders for up to four LNG carrier newbuildings at Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC).

The new partners have also formerly established their new joint venture company Sea Jade Investment.

The trio signed up to two firm orders for 175,000-cbm LNG carrier newbuildings for delivery dates in 2027.

The vessels will be fitted with WinGD LNG dual-fuel engines, on-board reliquefaction and Mark III Flex membrane-type cargo containment systems.

The deal also includes options for a further pair of vessels.

TradeWinds first reported on Wah Kwong’s break into the LNG sector in July.

The ships are fixed on 20-year periods to serve China Gas Holdings unit China Gas Hongda Energy Trading Co, at rates in the range of $80,000 to $100,000 per day.

Wah Kwong’s arm Vantage Energy is taking a controlling 45% shareholding in Sea Jade Investments.

New LNG entrant China Gas Holdings’ subsidiary China City Gas will hold a 30% stake in the new company.

Chinese leasing company CSSC Shipping’s Fortune Clean Energy holds the remaining 25%.

The venture is being set up with $100m of capital from the partners and is seeking external financing for its first vessels.

These latest orders bring DSIC’s LNG carrier orderbook to at least 10 vessels. The yard is a new entrant to this sector.

To date, the yard’s anchor customer for this vessel type has been China Merchants, which has contracted eight LNG carriers at DSIC.