• Home >
  • Developing LNG-Related Business

Developing LNG-Related Business

LNG is a cleaner alternative to heavy oil, the vessel fuel that has traditionally powered most vessels. Recognizing the potential benefits of LNG, the NYK Group is currently expanding its business scope to feature offerings for transporting LNG, operating LNG-fueled vessels, and supplying and marketing LNG fuel. On numerous fronts, we are constantly working to help build a stronger presence for LNG.

Society's Needs and Expectations

Tapping into Growing Needs for LNG as Environmental Regulations Grow Tighter

A comparison of heavy oil
and LNG fuel

Recent years have seen environmental issues—from climate change and global warming to air pollution—become pressing social concerns on a global scale, leading nations around the world to tighten their various environment-related laws and regulations. In the shipping industry, as well, restrictions on vessels' emissions of SOx (sulfur oxide), NOx (nitrogen oxide), and CO2 (carbon dioxide) are becoming increasingly strict. SOx emission regulations on fuel oil are growing particularly stringent. In January 2015, the sulfur limit for fuels usable in the North Sea, Baltic Sea, and North America Emission Control Area was lowered from 1.0% to 0.1%. Starting in January 2020, ships operating in other sea areas will need to comply with a new sulfur limit of 0.5%.
The growing demand for cleaner fuel sources has made LNG-an environmentally friendly fuel that generates no SOx emissions whatsoever-a promising solution. LNG-fueled vessels, which originally made their debut in Norway, are now expanding their reach: not only are their operating areas extending into Europe and the U.S., but more and more vessels in zones with environmental controls are switching to LNG fuel. The spread of LNG fuel hinges on the establishment and development of a solid supply infrastructure. Thus, projects aiming to lay infrastructural foundations for LNG hubs are now underway at ports in Singapore, Yokohama, and other major shipping hubs across the globe.

LNG-fueled vessel operations by region (including vessels on order)

Source: Created by NYK referencing aggregate data from Japan Marine Science Inc. (Data current as of February 28, 2017)
* "Vessels" include ferries, PSVs, commercial vessels (tankers, containerships, and bulk carriers, etc.), and dredgers.
PSV = Platform supply vessel, a vessel for transporting equipment and fuel to offshore rigs, etc.
Dredger = A vessel capable of gathering up ocean-floor sediments, etc. to secure sufficient water depths for ports (including rivers and shipping routes)

The NYK Group's Approach

Translating Extensive LNG Transport Expertise into New Ventures: Supplying and Marketing LNG-Fueled Vessels/LNG Fuel

The NYK Group has continued to expand its LNG transport network since launching routes between Japan and Indonesia in 1983. For more than 30 years now, we have given safe operations top priority and leveraged our expertise in vessel management, operation management, vessel design technologies, and financial arrangements to build strong relationships of trust with customers. LNG transport demands sophisticated technical know-how. Taking advantage of our extensive expertise in LNG vessel operations, we have successfully completed work on LNG-fueled tugboats, LNG-fueled car carriers, and LNG bunkering vessels. We also play active roles in collaborative LNG sales initiatives, working with domestic and international partners. Looking ahead, the market is likely to start seeing users requiring large amounts of LNG fuel for cross-ocean routes. The NYK Group, aware of that potential, thus serves on a government-led feasibility study to explore the development of LNG supply bases, including onshore infrastructure and fuel supplies from offshore locations. As we bolster and expand our sales of vessel fuel, we will continue to give LNG fuel a stronger market presence through a diverse range of activities.

Transport:Pooling a Wide Range of LNG Transport Knowledge

From vessel management and operation management to partnerships with customers, the NYK Group has amassed a wealth of expertise over more than three decades of experience in the LNG transport business.

Managing vessels through wholly owned subsidiaries

Wholly owned subsidiaries handle vessel management, ensuring safe operations and excellent transport quality

Networking with partners in Japan and abroad

Our LNG transport efforts help us build strong connections with companies both domestically and internationally, including major players in the oil industry

Establishing overseas bases for the energy sector

Bases in the U.K., the U.S., and Singapore provide a strong global foundation for LNG-related business

Use:Developing Cutting-Edge Technologies

The NYK Group builds LNG vessels with "dual fuel" engines that run on both heavy oil and LNG. We also devote considerable resources toward developing cutting-edge technologies, drawing on our operational experience to drive advances.

Supply:Strengthening LNG Fuel Business

In the shipping industry, rising fuel prices can put a company's bottom line at risk. By marketing LNG fuel, the NYK Group gives itself footholds on both the supply side and the demand side-an arrangement that helps hedge risks.

Expanding the NYK Group's LNG-Related Business

1983:LNG transport business launch

The NYK Group partners with Japanese electricity/gas companies to establish the LNG transport business, an effort that continues to expand NYK's international reach.

2015:Sakigake, Japan's first LNG-fueled tugboat

Sakigake features the same basic hull design and operability as a conventional tugboat but delivers incredible environmental performance.

2016:Auto Eco and Auto Energy, two LNG-fueled car carriers

The NYK Group completes and introduces two LNG-fueled car carriers (both vessels with "IA Super" ice class specifications) into European waters, where SOx emission regulations are particularly tight.

2016:Feasibility Study on LNG bunkering hub development plan at the port of Yokohama

The NYK Group works on a variety of efforts, including plans for facilities and initiatives to ensure safety.

2016:LNG fuel sales business on a global scale

The NYK Group works with ENGIE (France) and Mitsubishi Corporation to supply and market LNG fuel for use in vessels; the effort also promotes sales activities for LNG-fueled vessels.

2017:ENGIE Zeebrugge, an LNG bunkering vessel

The NYK Group introduces the world's first purpose built LNG bunkering vessel, which begins fueling the vessels Auto Eco and Auto Energy.

Page top