A Grandi fleet investment – Fishupdate.com

A Grandi fleet investment Published:  01 July, 2014

THE Icelandic fishing company HB Grandi said today it is planning a 14-billion kroner (ISK) – £72.5-million sterling – investment in five new trawlers to update its ageing fleet.

The company currently has two new pelagic vessels under construction at the Celiktrans Denis Insaat yard at Tuzla in Turkey, and the announcement was made last week that the company had started negotiations with the same yard for construction of three new fresher trawlers.

This brings the investment in the company’s fleet to approximately ISK 14 billion, of which roughly a half is accounted for by the two pelagic vessels.

Those who have kept a close eye on the Icelandic fishing industry will be aware that the fleet is an elderly one and the average vessel age is now just under 30 years.

Although there was a real will to invest in new capacity, the financial crisis certainly delayed this. Increased burdens placed on fishing companies, as well as uncertainty regarding the future of the fisheries management system, also accounted for a reluctance to invest in much-needed new tonnage.

HB Grandi CEO, Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson, said: ‘The new fresher trawlers represent a significant step forward.’ He also said the company could not rely on the present fleet indefinitely which had lasted unbelievably well. 

‘The reason they have lasted so well is that they have been looked after and properly maintained’, he continued.

‘The new vessels will ensure improved working conditions and the design is intended to make sure that they can deliver top quality catches. Fuel consumption will also be substantially reduced and steps are being taken to minimise emissions.’

Thórainn Sigurbjörnsson has been in charge of overseeing the construction of the two HB Grandi pelagic vessels in Turkey.

In addition, he has worked on behalf of Isfélagid at the same yard where the new vessel Sigurdur is being finished and will shortly be due for delivery.

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