Hamilton, Bermuda, June 13, 2018
We have previously commented upon the relationships NAT has with important major customers.
We would now like to inform you that one of our three Samsung suezmax newbuildings, scheduled for delivery in August 2018, has obtained a TC contract. We have entered into a 3-year fixed time charter contract with the first-class charterer, Equinor (formerly; Statoil) of Norway.
The contract is expected to commence in the autumn of 2018. Over the years, NAT has taken delivery of several newbuildings from Samsung Shipyard in South Korea. The contract has a base rate of $21,000 per day, producing positive cashflow and earnings. The time charter includes two optional periods that could extend the TC contract into 2023.
Major oil and gas companies, including oil traders both in the West and the East, are prioritized customer groups for NAT.
Going forward, we sense an upward trend for the tanker industry as there is a clear expectation for improvement. NAT is in a positive phase of development. Over the last two weeks, 5 suezmax tankers of 20 years or more have been sold. These transactions generate a total cashflow of about $50 million.