Israeli liner operator Zim has bunkered its first LNG dual-fuelled container ship with LNG in Shanghai, China.

Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) subsidiary Shanghai SIPG Energy Service Co (SSES), the owner of the 20,000-cbm LNG bunker vessel (LNGBV) Hai Gang Wei Lai (built 2022), and operations partner Avenir LNG delivered bonded LNG bunkers to the 15,000-teu boxship newbuilding Zim Sammy Ofer.

The bunkering of the pioneering container ship — which is named after late shipping magnate Sammy Ofer and is the first of 10 neo-panamax newbuildings — was carried out simultaneously with cargo operations at Yangshan Port with the support of Shanghai Maritime Bureau, Customs and Border Inspection authorities.

Bonded LNG is essentially imported, untaxed LNG which is awaiting “re-export” from the country.

Avenir sold the 20,000-cbm LNGBV to SSES, a joint venture between SIPG and Shenergy Group, in January 2022, and signed a long-term joint cooperation agreement to take on the global marketing of LNG bunkering services in Shanghai Port and provide operational and technical services support.

SSES general manager Zhang Da said: “In recent years, LNG has rapidly become the new trend of power fuel for international voyages, while green and low-carbon has become the basic consensus and goal for the future development of the port and shipping industry.

Zhang described Zim as “a long-term partner of Shanghai Port”.

“Under the leadership of SIPG, we will deepen the cooperation with Zim and explore the sustainable development of green shipping together,” he added.

Avenir chief executive Peter Mackey said: “This is a significant milestone for Avenir as we continue to expand our global bunkering footprint and support the shipping industry’s transition to cleaner fuels.”