Friday, January 19, 2024

Next To Go?

Algoma Central Corp and its wholly owned Algoma Tankers Ltd are in a fleet renewal pattern, adding to their domestic fleets and shedding older tonnage. They have also been active on the international scene with their Nova Algoma Cement Carrier fleet and other bulk ships and tankers*. 

On January 18, 2024  the company announced that they are acquiring two more tankers from the Norwegian operator Knutsens OAS (Algoma acquired another from Knutsen in 2023- the former Birgit Knutsen now renamed Algoluna). As with that ship Algoma will bareboat charter the ships back to Knutsen for a time until bringing one of the ships to Canada as replacement tonnage later in 2024.

The current domestic Algoma Tankers fleet consists of six ships ranging from 14 to 20 years of age. It is therefore not hard to guess which ship will be replaced first. The odd man out is the twenty year old Algoscotia, a well known ship in Halifax. It is usually employed in the milk run between Halifax, Sydney, Corner Brook and Sept-Iles with occasional forays to other regional ports, the US east coast or Great Lakes. It also had a short term deployment to Finland from January to April 2016 and was reflagged to Barbados for the time.

Algoscotia arrived in Halifax August 16, 2004 fresh from the builders.

 Purpose built for Algoma by the Jiangyan Shipyard Group's Qiuxin Shipyard in Shanghai in 2004, the Algoscotia is a 13,352 gt, 18,610 dwt product tanker. Coming up to its next five year survey, it may well be in line for some expensive refitting that Algoma is unwilling to bear. 

The new acquistions date from 2009 and are 16,000 dwt size. The only two ships in the current Knutsen fleet that meet this description are the Eli Knutsen anbd Liv Knutsen built by Jiangnan, Shanghai, measuring 11,889 gt, 16,568 dwt and are sisters to the previously mentioned Algoluna ex Birgit Knutsen which was built in 2010.

They are only "semi-modern" - that is to say not state of the art dual fuel or future proofed for methanol or hydrogen. The company's three 2023 acquistions were 14, 17 and 17 years old so it is hard to say how long term this investmant may be at 15 years old already.

The Algoscotia has been highlighted on these pages numerous times - among them:

March 6, 2020  and most recently December 17, 2023.

So far in 2024 the Algoscotia arrived at Imperial Oil January 4 from Sept-Iles and sailed January 5, returning January 15 from Sydney (January 7) and Corner Brook (January 12-13) and moved to Pier 9C to allow the import tanker STI Pontiac to dock. It is due to move off to anchor later this evening. Pictured this afternoon - the ship still looks good:



*  In June 2023 Algoma announced the order for two new ice class methanol ready tankers from Hyundai Mipo. The 37,000 dwt ships will be long term chartered to Irving Oil, so will not be operating on Algoma's usual trade for Imperial Oil. They will also be too large to use the St.Lawrence Seaway.

 In September 2023 Algoma announced the order of two dual fuel battery hybrid tankers for their Furebear joint venture with Fure Tankers. To be built by Jiniling, they will operate in the European tanker pool Gothia Tanker Alliance. There is no indication that they would be brought to Canada.


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