Finnish shipbuilding company Rauma Marine Constructions (RMC), and AS Tallink Grupp, have announced that the construction agreement for the new shuttle ferry, set to operate on the Helsinki–Tallinn route will enter into force today. The parties signed the letter of intent in October 2018.
The ferry is the biggest vessel yet to be built by Rauma Marine Constructions, and is valued at about EUR 250 million. The new shuttle ferry will be approximately 212 metres long and have a gross tonnage of approximately 50,000. It will be able to accommodate 2,800 passengers. The ferry will provide over 1,500 man-years of employment for the shipyard.
The vessel will utilise the newest technology and innovative solutions, with the aim of building the most environmentally-friendly and energy-efficient vessel possible. This includes machines that will run on a dual fuel and option for a battery solution, with the main source of fuel being low-emission liquefied natural gas (LNG).
“We are very pleased to have secured this order. The modern and environmentally-friendly vessel supports RMC’s aim to be a leading car and passenger ferry provider. The vessel is set to be delivered to the customer in the beginning of 2022, which means we have work secured at the shipyard for a long time ahead. We are also excited to see Tallink returning to Rauma, where four ferries for Tallink have been built previously”, says Jyrki Heinimaa, CEO of Rauma Marine Constructions.
Compared to Tallink’s newest shuttle ferry Megastar, which also operates between Helsinki and Tallinn, the new ferry will have an increased passenger area with more seating, as well as more crew cabins. From a technical standpoint, the ferry will have powerful shore connection equipment and will also be equipped with LNG fuel tanks approximately one third bigger than Megastar. Furthermore, the new enhanced design will allow the ferry’s CO2emissions to be reduced by 10 per cent.
“We are pleased to have signed the construction contract with RMC, thus supporting also our regional economies due to the construction taking place in Rauma, and we look forward to starting the shipbuilding process. We are confident the new vessel will enhance our operations on the important Tallinn–Helsinki route even further,” Paavo Nõgene, CEO of AS Tallink Grupp said.
Rauma Marine Constructions is currently also working on another car and passenger ferry. In January, the shipbuilding company signed a construction agreement for a car and passenger ferry servicing the Vaasa–Umeå route, together with Kvarken Link. Due to the growing number of orders, RMC and its network partners need to increase the workforce at the shipyard, with additional recruitments taking place on a continuous basis.