(Yicai Global) March 19 -- Major Chinese shipyard Yangzijiang Shipbuilding Holdings Ltd. has agreed a deal to procure smart ship equipment worth at least CNY100 million (USD15.75 million) annually from Beijing Highlander Digital Technology Co. over the next three years.
Singapore-listed Yangzijiang will also assist maritime intelligence technology provider Beijing Highlander in contacting shipowners to ensure its intelligent products meet their requirements, it said in a statement.
Smart ships are able to collect data on the marine environment, logistics, ports and onboard equipment in real-time, enabling them to autonomously adjust routes and maintain equipment and cargo in response to the latest situations, according to a definition by the China Classification Society. The trend is spreading across shipyards worldwide due to the associated reduction in costs for shipowners.
The two parties will also carry out in-depth cooperation in the field of smart ship technology, including the establishment of joint research institutions, research on smart ship types, and the founding of joint ventures setting up joint ventures, the statement said.
The pair will also work together to promote the development of standards for smart ship equipment, and seek certifications from classification bodies. They will jointly develop next-generation high value-added ships, and launch new-generation smart ships that meet international standards to serve the world's leading ship owners, the statement said, adding that more partners may join as the project progresses.
Yangzijiang Shipbuilding is primarily engaged in shipbuilding and offshore engineering. In 2017, the company signed a total of 74 orders with a combined capacity of 5.26 million tons, accounting for 16.3 percent of new orders in China.
China State Shipbuilding Corp. delivered the world's first smart ship last December to China Merchants Group Ltd., featuring a self-learning information platform, large-capacity calculations and an intelligent remote control system. The vessel will mainly ship coal and salt and ply between China, Southeast Asia and Australia.