Hyundai Heavy beats out Daewoo Shipbuilding to win $493m contract for ice-capable NZ tanker

Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee

 Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world's biggest shipbuilder, has beaten out its largest rival for the contract to build a $493 million ice-capable naval tanker for the New Zealand Defence Force which is part of an increased emphasis on the country's strategic interests in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

Hyundai and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, both listed on the Korean stock exchange, were shortlisted last year for the contract to replace the 30-year-old tanker HMNZS Endeavour, which is due to retire in 2018, leaving a two-year gap before the new vessel is delivered in 2020.

The Hyundai-built tanker is a step up for the Navy in terms of size and will be capable of refuelling two ships at a time while underway. It will have a range of 6,400 nautical miles, less than the Endeavour's 10,000-mile range, but with a faster speed of 16 knots versus 14 knots.

The vessel will be capable of supporting two Mini Typhoon cannons and a Phalanx CIWS system for defence against anti-ship missiles. It will also have a helicopter deck and space for at least 12 TEU shipping containers.

The Defence White Paper 2016 identifies Antarctica, the Southern Ocean and New Zealand's territorial waters as strategic challenges looking out to 2040, noting "a rising sophistication, range and number of actors operating within New Zealand's Exclusive Economic Zone, Southern Ocean and the South Pacific".

The tanker will be able to work alongside an ice-strengthened offshore patrol vessel, allowing the Defence Force to conduct patrols in the Southern Ocean following the introduction of new international Polar Code regulations in 2018, according to the paper.

Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says the tanker's ice-strengthening and "winterisation" features will allow it to deliver fuel and other goods to support Scott Base and McMurdo Station, during summer months once an icebreaker has cleared a path. And it will demonstrate New Zealand's long-term commitment to the Antarctic Joint Logistics Pool with the US, he said.

The IHS Jane's 360 website reported last year that Hyundai and Daewoo were looking to grow their naval support vessel order books. Daewoo had worked with UK-based BMT Defence Services to bid for contracts in Australia and New Zealand, having won a 452 million pound contract with the UK Ministry of Defence for four vessels and a contract for a similar tanker for Norway the following year.

Hyundai Heavy shares have gained 24 percent this year while Daewoo has fallen about 12 percent.

(BusinessDesk)


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If we knew its tonnage then we would know how big it is, rather than just guessing.

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Reckon that it will be pretty big, may be we could use the Endeavour as emergency housing or jails a la The Threepenny Novel or Great Expectations.

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Ahh, bit of a tanker-spotter, are we?

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If we knew how big it was we could compare it with other ships of the same size and see how over priced it is.

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Really? Which ice-capable military spec construction tanker are you going to compare it to?

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Its the military specification which eats all the money.
Its the opposite approach to the Canterbury which is basically a commercial vessel which was badly designed by NZ military types who weren't qualified to design ships.
It seems like we are still paying for their mistakes.

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Mil-spec is what allows a ship to go in harms way and not sink from the first damage it takes. It's kind of important in a military vessel and a tanker needs it a lot more than a transport.

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One could argue that a troop transport like the Canterbury because it carries so many people, needs to be far more protected.

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You could argue that. But every navy on earth would disagree with you - even the USN with more budget than everyone else still has it's troop transports far less protected than regular warships. The idea is that the warships do their specialty including the protection of a task force and leave the transports to do theirs.

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Let us hope that the steel is up to the task.

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Will be if the manufacturer has some standard Quality Control processes.

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They probably will but they may not be written in English.

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In fairness, Korea is much further along the economic development path where a country moves from producing cheap rubbish through to high quality products. E.g. Japan, Taiwan, Korea, China, in that order.

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When the order for this is placed, would it be possible to have a photo taken of the person signing off the order. Too often these transactions go wrong and everyone says its not their fault.

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I really hope that they have some of those huge joke pens like the ones that they use in Eastern Europe

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The truly important thing (according to defence force people I know) is that unlike HMNZS Canterbury, this ship have S-Bends in the sewerage system. After a couple of days of deployment, Canterbury smells like a portaloo at a week-long music festival.

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You would've thought that toilets on ships are pretty well sorted by this point in history. People have been pooping on ships (as opposed to off ships) for at least a hundred years now.

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I suspect (but do not know for sure) that the waste systems on HMNZS Canterbury are relatively new to shipbuilding and would have been an eco-friendly design. This may well have left a lot of room for things to go wrong.

The Protector class Offshore Patrol ships may also have similar issues, but I don't know anyone involved with them.

At any rate, the Canterbury is still a massive improvement over her predecessor the Charles Upham (or as she was known by those who sailed on her the Chuck Upham)

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We may not need another ice capable ship to patrol the southern oceans to protect our EEZ because our EEZ may have dramatically shrunk with the latest stricter UNCLOS ruling on what constitutes an Island and thereby generates an EEZ around it.

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Whilst on a military Logistics course at Trentham some years ago, we had a guest speaker from the Codification Bureau who described how some idiot in the Defence Purchasing office had deleted the requirement to codify and have manuals made for all parts on the OPV and IPV new NZ Navy craft, before the order was placed. This person clearly (wrongly) believed he was saving money on the project within the purchasing realm for his boss!! When contractors came to want to replace motors and parts on the newly delivered craft, they found that no components had been codified, and therefore could not order any spares! It took alot of time to organise codification through Singapore of all those parts, and it had to come from the Operating Budget. I hope that this debacle will never happen again. My guess is civilians messing with military equipment and systems they don't know about!

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Do you have plans of the said Tanker for a professional model maker to build a museum quality model for a client and perhaps even the Navy?

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