SINGAPORE: Conglomerate Keppel Corp has formed a joint venture to build and operate a new shipyard in Azerbaijan.
It partners are State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) and Azerbaijan Investment Company (AIC).
The partners will develop and manage a new 52-hectare shipbuilding and ship-repair facility in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan. They are investing a total of US$386 million into the SOCAR-Keppel Shipyard, which will be developed over a two- to three-year period.
Keppel's Offshore & Marine (O&M) arm will have a 10 per cent share of the yard, SOCAR will have 65 per cent share, while AIC will hold 25 per cent share.
Keppel O&M will manage and operate the yard, and will have the option to acquire another 10 per cent stake in the next three years.
The new yard is designed to build a variety of vessels ranging from offshore support vessels to tankers, as well as ship repair and conversion.
Speaking at the yard's groundbreaking ceremony in Azerbaijan, Singapore's Foreign Affairs Minister George Yeo, said, "A new chapter has opened in our bilateral relationship. There is great potential for the strengthening of economic and other ties.
"The oil and gas sector is an obvious area of greater cooperation. Although Singapore has no oil or gas, we have a strong chemicals and maritime support cluster, with many Singapore-based companies supporting the operation of large oil and gas companies. The development of this new SOCAR-Keppel shipyard supports the oil strategy promulgated by President Heydar Aliyev."
Keppel said the joint venture is not expected to have material impact on its net tangible assets or earnings per share for the current financial year.
So far Keppel corp has been very successful in executing their Near Market, Near Customer strategy. Positive news. Future growth potential
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