India’s GAIL has again postponed the tender seeking to hire nine LNG carriers to carry U.S. liquefied natural gas starting in 2017.
According to the tender documents GAIL has set the new date for bid submissions to March 31, 2016.
Indian company re-floated its tender in September 2015, but has since delayed the bid submissions date twice. It was last expected to close on February 29.
No changes were made to the initial tender as GAIL is still looking for nine LNG ships of a cargo capacity of 150,000-180,000 cbm, enabling it to comply with its off-take commitments at Sabine Pass and Cove Point LNG projects from December 2017.
According to the report by Press Trust of India, GAIL’s chairman and managing director B C Tripathi noted the latest postponement is due to a request by bidders that are looking for more time to complete their bids.
Under the original tender, nine vessels, three of which have to be built by shipyards in India, will have a delivery window from January 1, 2019, to May 31, 2019, for foreign shipyards and July 1, 2022, and ending June 30, 2023, for Indian shipyards.
Indian shipyards, Pipavav Defence and Offshore Engineering and Cochin Shipyard have already agreed deals with South Korea’s DSME and Samsung Heavy Industries, respectively, to cooperate in the construction of the vessels.
Cochin Shipyard has additionally acquired a licence by France’s GTT to build LNG carriers with the Mark III membrane containment system.