FBMA Marine Inc (FBMA), the Aboitiz-owned shipbuilder based in Cebu, Philippines has signed another contract with SAS Sudiles of New Caledonia, in the South Pacific. This is for a vessel 57m fast aluminium catamaran passenger vehicle ferry designed by BMT Nigel Gee Ltd, a subsidiary of BMT Group Ltd. This success builds on the FBMA Marine new building contract for a catamaran ferry in Scotland, signed last month.
The contract with SAS Sudiles provides for a fast catamaran ferry to New Caledonia’s capital, Noumea. To replace the existing one delivered seven years ago, this vessel will , operate on the same infrastructure route connecting Noumea to the outlying islands of Iles des Pins, Mare, Lifou and Ouvea..
The contract was awarded after a lengthy and in-depth international tender process. to address Sudiles’ prime need for a fuel-efficient vessel giving exceptional sea keeping and passenger comfort in the challenging sea conditions of the South Pacific. The first collaborative design from BMA and BMT exceeded Sudiles’ requirements.
BMT’s hull design has been developed from the highly successful ModCAT hull form used initially for the extremely effective SeaFighter, a 73m Catamaran for the US Navy.
Craig Patrick, Sales & Marketing Manager of FBMA Marine commented: “This is an extremely important, exciting project for both FBMA and the fast ferry industry. This new catamaran design pushes back conventional boundaries and provides the operator with a more fuel efficient platform with excellent seakeeping capabilities. We look forward to working with SAS Sudiles and continuing to meet all their vessel requirements. We are also very pleased to be partnering with BMT, drawing on our considerable experience of building aluminium and steel catamarans and other craft here in Cebu.”
Speaking for BMT Nigel Gee Ltd., Technical Director Ed Dudson said, ”This has been a very challenging requirement but is a project ideally suited to our specialist vessel design expertise. Our successful development of the ModCAT hull form will provide a very robust, proven platform for a very extreme operating environment.”
The vessel will be classed with Bureau Veritas to IMO HSC 2000 Cat B regulations.