Chittagong, 26 November, 2010: Bangladesh’s leading shipbuilding company Western Marine Shipyard Limited, today ( Friday), delivered two ocean going vessels to its German owner GRONA Shipping GMbH Co. KG.
Mr. Saiful Islam, chairman of Western Marine formally delivered the twin vessels–“Grona Ammersum” & “Grona Biessum” , the largest ever ships built by a Bangladeshi company to Marku Vedder, representative of GRONA Shipping at a handing over ceremony held at the Chittagong Dry Dock Limited.
Minister for Industries Mr. Dilip Barua was present as the function as the chief guest while Mr. Martin Biesel, state secretary of the federal Foreign office of Germany and Mr. Holger Michael, German Ambassador to Bangladesh were present as the special guests.
The 100 meter long, 5,200 DWT, ice class vessels were built complying all the latest International Maritime Guidelines under the supervision of class Germanischer Lloyd. The vessels went for a successful sea trial on November 15, 2010.
Addressing the function, Mr. Dilip Barua said the government was actively considering to establish a special shipbuilding zone to promote this 100 per cent export oriented sector with the aim of earning $5 billion a year from export by 2015. He said considering the potential of the shipbuilding sector, the government had declared shipbuilding as thrust sector. The minister also said that Bangladesh Bank has been waiting for green light from the Finance ministry to fund the shipbuilding sector under a Tk 200 crore refinancing scheme.
Mr. Martin Biesel termed shipbuilding a great success story for Bangladesh. He said it would encourage the potential German investors to invest in Bangladesh.
Western Marine Managing Director Mr. Sakhawat Hossain said, “To build these strengthen ships 1500 MT of ice class steel has been fabricated using 60 MT of welding electrodes. Then, 22km of marine cables were laid in & 24,000 liter of Sigma paint was used for its skin protection & beautification. All these tasks took one million man-hours.”
Western Marine Chairman Mr. Saiful Islam said that shipbuilding sector could increase the GDP by at least 3 per cent within next six years as the sector had been showing great potential to become country’s largest foreign exchange earning sector.
“When other sectors are facing stiff competitions in the international market, shipbuilding is silently but surely moving ahead. The sector will be the driving force for another socio-economic uplift in our country.” he said.
Among others, Owner of the vessel Mr. Markku Vedder from Grona Shipping, Mahfuz Anam Editor The Daily Star. Quality Management Director Mr. Jalal Khaled also spoke at the program.
The minister later cut a cake with the guests and visited different parts of the ships.