Chittagong, 10 February 2011: After setting a milestone in the history of Bangladesh by delivering two ice-class 5,200 DWT multi-purpose vessels to German owner; the renowned Chittagong based shipyard, Western Marine has set-off in creating another history. Today, 10th February 2011 Western Marine has inaugurated the construction work of one 49.80 M passenger ferry through a “Keel-Laying Ceremony” in their shipyard at Patiya. This ferry is being built for Danish ship-owner Hundested Rorvig Faergefart (HR). This newbuilding project will be monitored by the French classification society Bureau Veritas (BV). It must be mentioned that achievement of this order is a pride for Bangladesh because for the first time in the history of Denmark, a Danish company has placed a newbuilding order for ferry out of their nation. Denmark has a huge global fame in building the best quality ferries, in-fact several inland ferries in Bangladesh were imported from Denmark once. Today after decades the time has changed, Bangladesh will be exporting ferries to Denmark. Therefore this will be the beginning of a new chapter in the shipbuilding industry of Bangladesh.
Western Marine was nominated for this newbuilding order by Danish Maritime Authority (DMA), which is known for maintaining & following the stringent maritime safety rule in the world. The Secretary of Ministry of Commerce, Mr. Ghulam Hussain graced the Keel-Laying Ceremony as the Chief Guest; and the Chairman & CEO of East Coast Group, Mr. Azam J Chowdhury as the Special Guest. Besides a number of foreign dignitaries attended the ceremony including the ship owners, The Chairman & CEO of HR, Capt. Kennie G. Kjeldsen & Mr. Bo Andersen; Regional Head (SE Asian) of BV, Mr. Hubert Mignot; First Secretary of Asst High Commission of India, Mr. Ashok Yadav; and Representative of Western Marine in Europe & the MD of East Wind Germany, Mr. Hans-Ulrich Brenneke; Attorney-at-Law from Kromann Reumert, Denmark, Mr. William Kanta. Other guests who participated in this ceremony includes: the two DMDs of Southeast Bank, Mr. Syed Imtiaz Hasib & Mr. Shahid Hossain. Southeast bank has come forward as a financial partner to Western Marine in this project by facilitating a credit limit of BDT 44 cr (funded & non-funded).
The MD of Western Marine said that the shipyard will be successful in delivering the ferry to its owner by this year taking the image of our nation forward. The Chairman of Western Marine stated that trade between Bangladesh & Denmark is rising steadily & export of this ferry will further enhance the bilateral trade between these two nations. The owner of the ferry Mr. Anderson from HR, Denmark expressed his deep satisfaction on the shipyard’s activity & wished the management team a successful project. Mr. Hubert Mignot, the Regional Chief Executive of BV who has made a second visit to Western Marine mentioned that Western Marine is fully capable of handling such project & as a classification society they will always be beside to supervise the shipyard in this newbuilding. Mr. Hasib, DMD of Southeast Bank, appreciated the entrepreneurship of the shipyard for their success in such a short time & as a banker he said Southeast Bank is always ready to stretch its hand to such potential entrepreneurship.
Finally the Special Guest, Mr. Azam Chowdhury commented that today Bangladesh is no longer lacking behind in any aspect, the only thing required is a facilitating environment to accommodate & promote more entrepreneurship like Western Marine so we can move ahead. The Chief Guest Mr. Ghulam Hussain stated that the government has already identified shipbuilding as one of the most important emerging industrial sector in Bangladesh, which has the potentiality in up-lifting our economy enormously. So he assured that the government t will definitely come forward in assisting this industry in all aspect for a better future.