EIB to finance first LNG bunkering vessel in Greece

Public Gas Corporation of Greece SA (DEPA) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) on Tuesday signed an agreement to finance with up to 20 million euros the construction of a new liquid natural gas (LNG) bunkering vessel for maritime use in Greece which will be based in Piraeus.

In an announcement, EIB said that the first vessel of its kind in Greece and the Eastern Mediterranean will have a capacity of 3,000 cubic metres and will be supplied with LNG at Revithoussa LNG terminal.
It will refuel ships both in Piraeus and other ports in Greece and the wider region, supporting the shift towards green shipping with more environmentally friendly fuels, in line with the new more stringent international regulations. The agreement was signed by Konstantinos Xifaras, chief executive officer of DEPA, and Andrew McDowell, EIB vice president.

The loan is guaranteed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI/Juncker Plan) and will cover 50 percent of the vessel’s construction cost. For the construction of the vessel, DEPA has secured an additional amount of 8.9 million euros from the European Union under the European Action entitled “BlueHUBS”, which is coordinated by DEPA and aims at expanding the use of LNG in maritime transport in the eastern Mediterranean.

Following the signature of the agreement, Xifaras said: “The new vessel will serve the supply needs not only of Piraeus but also of other Greek ports and it represents one more decisive step in DEPA’s efforts to expand the use of LNG in maritime transport in the eastern Mediterranean, thus creating an integrated and efficient LNG supply chain. Through targeted investments, such as this one, as well as through multilevel international collaborations, DEPA supports the transition of both big ports and ships in the region to the LNG era, contributing to the protection of the environment and improving the competitiveness of Greek shipping and the ports of our country.”

EIB’s VP McDowell said, “The European Investment Bank is pleased to work with DEPA to support our shared goals of enabling Green Shipping in Greek and international waters. The new EIB financed vessel will provide an alternative fuel for ships in the Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean.”