We present the latest NIFS update of the latest changes to the Global ferry fleet. This edition covers November and the opening days of December 2021.
All information is thoroughly researched and cross-checked as far as possible. However, please note that this is a snapshot at the time of writing (6 December) and later changes may occur. We also include some information that is based on industry intelligence that we believe is reliable but may not yet be officially announced.
Included below are some updates from our October edition.
Broker reports state that DFDS has extended the charter of the FADIQ. The Alternative Transport/Ekol owned ship will remain with the Danish ferry giant for six months from January 2022. She is currently on Turkish services.
Fionia Sea, Jutlandia Sea, Pol Maris and Pol Stella
According to industry information and confirmed in the latest briefing from Navitaship, Stena Line is taking the FIONIA SEA and JUTLANDIA SEA on charter for four years from January, reportedly at a rate of €18,000 per day.
It is understood that these ships will be used on the Humber – Rotterdam service when it moves ports from Killingholme to Immingham. The ships are currently on charter to Wallenius-SOL who are shortly due to receive newbuild LNG tonnage.
There are industry reports that the existing vessels POL MARIS and POL STELLA will go on charter to DFDS. Whilst industry information has suggested the Rosslare – Dunkerque route, these could well be the vessels needed for the Killingholme – Rotterdam space-charter capacity increase announced.by DFDS and CLdN.
Last month, we reported on the FRIJSENBORG arriving in Thai seas. The ship subsequently went on to visit China Beihai, arrived at Yokohama, Japan on 4 December and is currently enroute to Panama. It has since been reported that FRIJSENBORG’s charter is to Intermarine for three months from October, with options. Intermarine specialise in transporting project, breakbulk and heavylift cargo.
Kerry and Wasa Express
Last month, we reported on the charter of WASA EXPRESS of UME to Baleària of Spain. The length of this charter is reported to be three months. Her place will be taken by the Stena RoRo owned Visentini KERRY, as we suggested last month. According to broker reports, KERRY will be on a 24-month charter to Baleària from January.
With DFDS still awaiting their now very delayed newbuild AURA SEAWAYS from China’s Jingling yard, it isn’t clear how they will bridge the gap in capacity on their Baltic routes. KERRY has been operating on the Karlshamn – Klaipeda route since the end of September when she swapped places with the REGINA SEAWAYS, the latter ship going to the Rosslare – Dunkerque service.
Whilst Tallink’s ROMANTIKA was busy with her COP26 Accommodation charter at Glasgow, the company announced a much more significant project for the cruiseferry. The vessel is to be long-term bareboat chartered to Holland Norway Lines from late March 2022. The newstart ferry company will be opening a service from Eemshaven in The Netherlands to Kristiansand in Norway from 7 April 2022. The 18-hour crossing will be provided three times per week in each direction.
The charter is initially for three years but with separate options for two further years. According to Tallink’s Investor Release, the “Charterparty becomes effective after it is approved by the mortgagees of the ship”.
As a result of the charter, the ISABELLE is now listed to re-open Tallink’s Stockholm – Riga route from 6 April 2022.
The Stena RoRo managed SAGA (ex STENA SAGA) departed from her major refit at Perama, Greece on 16 November 2021. The ship had been there since 10 September, following her summer charter operating between Albania and Italy for Adria Ferries. With a new stern access arrangement in place, the ship is understood to have been chartered as floating accommodation in the Philippines area.
At the time of writing, the ship is in Singaporean waters. The charterer is believed to be Bridgemans Services Group. However, rather mysteriously references to the ship came and went quickly from that company’s social media and websites.
Stena Line has extended the charter of the 2000-built SOMERSET by 12 months, beginning January 2022. The CLdN ship has been on charter to Stena since August 2018 and is normally used on the Harwich – Rotterdam roro service.
P&O Ferries is understood to have extended the charter of the STENA FORECASTER for six months from October. The ship is currently operating on the Liverpool – Dublin route.
Rather unexpectedly, Kiwirail announced a one year charter of the CLdN “Kawasaki Class” VALENTINE. The vessel is needed to release passenger vehicle capacity on the KAITAKI and ARATERE, due to gearbox repairs to the KAIARAHI that aren’t expected to be completed until at least March 2022. Additionally, ARATERE is experiencing ongoing technical issues. It is believed that Kiwirail has options for extending the charter of the 2,300 lane-metre VALENTINE.
Following a drydock at Falmouth, the ship departed for New Zealand on 13 November. Having transited the Panama Canal on her voyage, VALENTINE is currently expected at Wellington, New Zealand on 14 December.
(Also see ‘Sales’ section below).
According to Navitaship, VISBY’s charter from Rederi AB Gotland to DFDS, was extended by three months in October. The ship currently operates on the Rosslare – Dunkerque “Brexit-buster” route. Note, that this is the 2003-Maltese registered vessel and not the 2018-Swedish registered VISBY, which was previously the VISBORG until recent weeks.
The charter of the WEDELLSBORG by Grendi has reportedly been extended by 12 months from February 2022. The ship joined the company’s Sardinian trade in February 2021.
The 1972-built roro ferry ARMENISTIS is shown on Equasis as having been sold by Ainaftis to the unknown Star Mariners SA. At the same time, she moved from the registry of Greece to that of the Cook Islands. She departed Piraeus on 24 November and sailed to Rades in Tunisia, subsequently departing there on 30 November. At the time of writing, the vessel is showing a destination of Douala, Cameroon with a rather miserable speed of under 1.5 knots.
Given the ship’s ongoing technical issues, which seem to have resulted in her exit from the Ainaftis fleet, it would be very unsurprising if the ship has actually been sold for scrap. One theory is that she will do some “spot charters” before reaching her end.
The almost 50-year old ship is a well-known roro globally, operating for many years as the C.T.M.A. VOYAGEUR of C.T.M.A. and having started her career as the ANDERIDA of British Rail Sealink.
Irish Ferries’ owner, the Irish Continental Group, took over ownership of the CALAIS SEAWAYS on 3 November 2021. The looming sale of the CALAIS SEAWAYS from DFDS to the Irish Continental Group had been widely known in the ferry industry for many months, but was only confirmed on 4 November. The ship was replaced on the DFDS Dover – Calais route by CÔTE D’OPALE in August but will return to the same service in December as the ISLE OF INNISFREE for ambitious rival, Irish Ferries.
Ciudad de Mahón
The Irish Continental Group’s second November acquisition for the Irish Ferries’ Dover – Calais route was the CIUDAD DE MAHÓN. The ship had only changed hands last summer when Grimaldi bought the Trasmediterránea Balearic operations from Naviera Armas. However, Trasmed GLE had made no secret that they didn’t see a future for the vessel in their fleet.
CIUDAD DE MAHÓN will be handed over in January 2022, entering service with Irish Ferries following drydocking and re-branding. No name has been announced, but hot money is on her becoming the ISLE OF INISHTURK. The ferry is no stranger to Dover, having previously operated as the NORTHERN MERCHANT for Norfolkline’s Dunkerque route 2000 to 2006.
Croazia Jet / Virgen De Coromoto
An Equasis update revealed that the MONT VENTOUX has been sold by Stena RoRo to CMA CGM. The 1996-build Visentini vessel has been on long-term charter to CMA-CGM on the Marseille – Tunis service that they operate alongside DFDS.
The ORCADIA (ex SATURN) of Pentland Ferries departed Scapa Flow on 12 November 2021, under the tow of the CHRISTOS LXI. She arrived at Perama on 5 December. Her new owner is Creta Cargo Lines and after rebuilding will be used on Greek Coastal services next Summer
FRS has reported sold the SAN GWANN to a Maltese operator. The high speed passenger catamaran has been renamed SAN GIORGIO. The vessel had been operating the Ibiza – Formentara route until she dramatically ran aground on 28 August, leaving the ship damaged. FRS has recently announced that they will cease to operate the Balearic services that only began this year as well as the Motril – Melilla route.
Whilst sailing to New Zealand to begin a charter to Kiwirail’s Interislander service, the sale of the VALENTINE was announced. Rederi AB Gotland has purchased the ship from CLdN for a reported €12 million.
AMIRA MARFAT (ex ALEXO, FINNLAND, MERCHANT, FINNMERCHANT) is expected at Aliaga imminently for scrapping. The ship was recently switched to the flag of St.Kitts and Nevis. The roro was only sold by the Cypriot Salamis Lines last September to the Turkish Merfat Maritime.
Greek sources are reporting that the AQUA SOLUTION of Seajets will soon be scrapped. The vessel had been acquired by Seajets in 2018 after 10 years with accommodation provider C-Bed. However, no work ever began on converting the 1969-vessel and as one of the oldest car ferries still existing in Europe, her future hasn’t looked promising.
Last month, we reported the sale of the MASARRAH (ex EXPRESS APHRODITE, STENA HIBERNIA etc) for scrapping at Alang. As with her former Holyhead fleetmate above, she ended up going elsewhere. She was beached as ASARRAH at Gadani, Pakistan on 2 December 2021.
The Red Sea roro DODO is currently on her way to Alang for scrapping. She is due to arrive on 10 December.
EXPRESS PEGASUS is still at Perama but has had her Hellenic Seaways colours removed and now has the name PEGASUS X. A one-way trip to Aliaga is said to be imminent.
On 6 December, the HOLGER DANSKE of Scandlines departed her long-term lay-up at Rødbyhavn. Her destination is the Fornæs Ship Recycling yard at Grenaa, Denmark. The vessel was withdrawn from service in April 2020 when the Covid-19 Pandemic struck. Although a passenger vessel, the HOLGER DANSKE has been used mainly for dangerous goods transport on the Rødby – Puttgarden route since 1999.
Despite being widely reported as sold for scrap, MAHABBAH was noted to have operated some commercial sailings for Namma Shipping Lines during November on the Jeddah – Digna route. It is unclear what her future is.
Molslinjen has announced that the 1962-built SØNDERHO is being recycled by Smedegaarden A / S in Esbjerg. This follows the Fanølinjen Esbjerg-Fanø route receiving the environmentally friendly electric ferry GROTTE.
Rete Ferroviaria Italia (RFI)’s new LNG ready ferry IGINIA has been delivered. The vessel was built in Genoa at San Giorgio del Porto and T. Mariotti shipyards. The ferry, suitable for the transportation of railway carriages, wagons, passengers, and vehicles, will soon enter service in the Strait of Messina. This new ship is LNG-ready.
Brittany Ferries’ SALAMANCA was handed over on 30 November. The second E-flexer class for Brittany Ferries is long-term bareboat chartered by the company from Stena RoRo. The vessel is expected to depart from the shipyard at Wehai, China around mid-December, entering service on the Portsmouth – Bilbao route at the end of March.
Scandlines has ordered a zero emission freight ferry for the Puttgarden-Rødby route. Being built at Turkey’s Cemre Shipyard, the vessel will be delivered in 2024. The vessel will be the replacement for the already retired HOLGER DANSKE and the former Rostock – Gedser vessel KRONPRINS FREDERIK, now used in a freight-only role.
- Length: 147.4 m
- Breadth: 25.4 m
- Design draft: 5.30 m
- Freight capacity: 66 freight units (abt. 1,200 lane metres)
- Passenger Capacity: 140
- Service speed: 18 knots
Polskie Promy has placed an order at Remontowa in Gdansk for three ‘hybrid’ ropax ferries with an option for a fourth. Two ships will go to Unity Line, with one, plus the optio,n nominated for Polferries. The ships will be LNG Dual fuel plus battery.
- Length: 195.6 m
- Breadth: 31.6 m
- Freight capacity: 4100 lane metres
- Passenger Capacity: 400
- Service speed: 19 knots