Chouest building new Brazilian base, shipyard

The Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO) family of companies has started construction on a massive logistics support base and naval repair shipyard for its own vessels at the Port of Açu, in São João da Barra, northern Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil. This strategic location is near the established and growing offshore Campos basin.

Located in the south breakwater of Açu Port’s Terminal 2, B-Port will feature a floating dry dock with a lifting capacity of 13,700t.

In April 2014, Chouest and Prumo Logistica signed the initial lease for the port property, recently amending the agreement to include a total area of 574,200sq. m, if all future contract options are exercised.

“We are already investing to meet the current demand of our international customers and new bids in the industry, and our unit at the Port of Açu is essential for such,” said Chouest Brazilian Director Ricardo Chagas.

The facility will have ten covered slips, including nine 25.2m-wide regular slips, each with two 25-ton overhead cranes, and one 38.4 m wide heavy lift slip with two 100-ton overhead cranes.

In addition to the covered slips, the straight docks provide more than 525 linear m of dock space, which can easily accommodate five large platform supply vessels (PSVs). B-Port can fully support 15 vessels simultaneously.

Construction work has been underway for several months, and the expected start of operations will take place during the first half of 2015.

The new B-port is modeled after Chouest's innovative Gulf of Mexico terminal hub, C-Port, a multi-service complex in Port Fourchon, a deepwater port on the Louisiana coast that opened in 1996.

Based in Cut Off, Louisiana, ECO operates a fleet of more than 200 vessels, ranging from 87ft to over 360ft in length, and has four US-affiliate shipyards: North American Shipbuilding (Larose, LA), LaShip (Houma, LA), Gulf Ship (Gulfport, MS) and Tampa Ship (Tampa, FL), as well as its Brazilian shipyard, Navship.

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