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Today, a naming ceremony was held at the Sakaide shipyard of Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. for a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier that NYK and Kansai Electric Power Co. Inc. (KEPCO; head office: Osaka; president and director: Shigeki Iwane) will jointly own. At the ceremony, the ship was named 'LNG Sakura' by Mr. Iwane of KEPCO, and the ceremonial rope holding the vessel in place was cut by Mr. Iwane's wife. Tadaaki Naito, president of NYK, attended the ceremony, among others.

'LNG Sakura' is the first vessel to be co-owned between NYK (30%) and KEPCO (70%). After construction, the ship will transport LNG sourced from shale gas fields in North America and various other locations, in a 20-year charter agreement. Sakura, meaning 'cherry blossom' in Japanese, was included in the name as a symbol of friendship and goodwill between Japan and the United States, and to encourage the continual development of the project.

The new ship features a moss-type tank, the largest in the industry, having a capacity of about 177,000 m3, enabling highly efficient transport. In addition, the ship is an energy-saving carrier equipped with a new twin-screw and a dual-fuel diesel electric propulsion engine that improves fuel consumption and propulsion performance.

NYK will continue its efforts for stable and economical energy transport.

Outline of 'LNG Sakura'

Length overall: 300.00 meters

Breadth: 48.90 meters

Gross tonnage: 135,977 tons

Main engine: dual-fuel diesel electric propulsion engine

Shipbuilder: Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd.

Flag: Bahamas

(Some of the above specifications are estimates.)