Idan Ofer’s Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) is teaming up with HD Hyundai Global Services for a new digitalisation and decarbonisation project.

The giant Singapore shipowner and its South Korean partner signed a memorandum of understanding at the seventh Asia-Pacific Regional Marine Digital International Conference hosted by South Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.

The strategic digital cooperation aims to use digital solutions for carbon emission monitoring and optimising ship operations.

EPS will deploy Hyundai’s AI-based software OceanWise.

The platform will analyse real-time operational data from EPS’ fleet via its algorithm, allowing for carbon emission monitoring and forecasting without the need for additional equipment installation or investments.

The system will also devise an optimal route, taking into account expected waiting times at ports and optimal speeds for each segment of the journey, for optimised carbon reduction.

“EPS believes that sustainability begins with accountability and are proud to pave the way for a sustainable future with these partnerships,” the owner said.

The company has been focusing heavily on decarbonisation.

TradeWinds has reported EPS is poised to contract the world’s first ammonia-powered bulk carrier newbuildings in China, according to shipbuilding sources.

$480m newbuilding deal

The deal for six ammonia, dual-fuelled, 210,000-dwt newcastlemaxes is valued at about $480m in total.

The order involves an initial three ships to be built at state-owned Qingdao Beihai Shipbuilding Heavy Industry with options for a further three, according to sources familiar with the talks.

Delivery of the first ship is pencilled in for mid-2026.

While a number of so-called “ammonia ready” ships have been contracted — which have the capability to upgrade to ammonia fuel at a later date — Eastern Pacific’s vessels will be built ready to run on ammonia or conventional marine fuel.

“These newbuildings are not ammonia-ready vessels, they will be built to run on ammonia from the get-go,” one source said.

Ammonia-fuel engines are still undergoing development, but engine maker MAN Energy Solutions has said it will be ready to deliver the first two-stroke ammonia fuel engines by the end of 2024 to be installed on the newbuildings.