By Xu Aiying and Lee Jihae
Three Korean shipbuilders have obtained an order from Qatar to build 100 liquefied natural gas (LNG) vessels.
The state-owned company Qatar Petroleum on June 1 announced that it inked a deal worth QAR 70 billion (KRW 23 trillion) for LNG ship construction with Hyundai Heavy Industries, Samsung Heavy Industries, and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering.
The signing ceremony was held via videoconferencing and attended by Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy Sung Yun-mo, Qatari Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad Sherida Al Kaabi, Qatargas CEO Khalid bin Khalifa Al Thani, Hyundai Heavy President Ka Sam-hyun, Samsung Heavy CEO Nam Joon-ou and Daewoo CEO Lee Sung-geun.
Minister Al Kaabi said the "monumental" deal will secure Qatar 60% of the global capacity for LNG vessel construction until 2027, calling Korea an important strategic partner in energy.
He added that he hopes this agreement, which marks a milestone in bilateral relations, will make greater and widen the prospects for economic cooperation between the two countries.
Producing 77 million tons of LNG a year, Qatar is expanding its LNG fleet to boost annual output to 126 million tons by 2027.