Fincantieri and China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the extension of the industrial cooperation already existing between the two groups to all segments of merchant shipbuilding.
The agreement foresees the parties to discuss the possibility to extend their current collaboration, which counts a joint venture dedicated to the first cruise ships ever built in China for the local market and other related activities, including a number of research and development projects in several areas of the shipbuilding, such as: vessels for the oil & gas industry; cruise-ferries; mega-yachts; special vessels; steel infrastructures; marine engineering and equipment procurement as well as cruise cabins, interior decoration, and the establishment of a reliable supply chain in the cruise segment in China. The parties may consider additional cooperation opportunities and may therefore extend the scope of the agreement to other areas.
Fincantieri and CSSC will establish a joint working group, composed of 6 members with appropriate technical expertise, 3 selected by each side. This group aims, by the end of the year, to conclude the preliminary activities: to define potential opportunities for each of the areas identified for the collaboration, to analyze the market size and to identify preferential sales channel, to analyze potential partnership among CSSC and Fincantieri group companies or its network of suppliers.
In February 2017 Fincantieri, CSSC and Carnival Corporation signed a binding agreement for the construction of two cruise ships, with an option for additional four, at the Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding (SWS) shipyard. The group also signed a letter of intent (LOI) with CSSC and the Shanghai City’s district of Baoshan for the development of the supply chain mainly dedicated to cruise activities, as well as shipbuilding and maritime, and a comprehensive agreement in the field of ship repair and conversions with Huarun Dadong Dockyard (HRDD), the leading Chinese shipyard specialized in ship repair and refitting activities, aimed at serving the cruise ships based in China.
The CEO of Fincantieri Giuseppe Bono commented: “This agreement is a further recognition of our decision to access to the great potential represented by China. Acting as a first mover for the shipbuilding, today we are able to create new opportunities for small and medium-sized companies of our supply chain, through the successfully consolidation of the relations with the major groups of the Country in this sector, and, at the same time, to continue to do the same in the West, taking advantage of the cruise segment boom and maintaining the acquired leaderships”.