Saudi Arabia’s International Maritime Industries (IMI) and Columbia Ship Management (CSM) have converted a six-month-old Memorandum of Understanding into a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA).

The two companies plan to collaborate on ship design, construction, and repair business, while CSM will also provide consultancy on the adoption of ‘sensorisation technologies’ in these fields and for vessel performance optimisation.

The MoA brings together IMI, the world’s youngest shipbuilding and repair complex and the largest such facility in the Middle East Africa region, and CSM, one of the world’s leading ship managers and service groups and a specialist in vessel operation, crewing, training, and newbuilding/repair supervision. IMI is located on a purpose-built site at Ras Al Khair on Saudi’s Gulf coast while CSM, headquartered in Cyprus, has a global presence with offices in 33 countries.

Dr Abdullah Al Ahmari, CEO of IMI, declared: “We are pleased to have signed this agreement with CSM, a company that is committed to supporting our efforts of building a world-class, technologically advanced shipyard that will drive the development of the maritime industry in Saudi Arabia.

“The partnership enables us to leverage CSM’s unique capabilities and expertise, therefore enhancing our offering to both partners and customers. We look forward to collaborating further with CSM and achieving more important milestones in the near future.”

Mark O’Neil, CEO of CSM, said: “We are delighted to be able to underline our commitment to the important Middle East and Saudi markets by further developing our excellent relationship with IMI through this new MoA.

He added, “IMI is a Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shipyard providing the most advanced and sustainable newbuilding, maintenance, repair and overhaul services for commercial vessels including VLCCs, chemical tankers, bulk carriers, offshore support vessels and offshore jackup rigs. Together with IMI, we have a mutual interest in strengthening our collaboration in order to meet the ambitious targets set out by IMI in the MENA region.”

IMI is a joint venture between Saudi Aramco, Lamprell, Bahri, and Hyundai Heavy Industries.

Source: Seatrade Maritime News