SGX-listed Marco Polo Marine has signed a framework agreement with wind turbine maker Vestas, which finalizes the previous Memorandum of Understanding signed in December 2022 between its Taiwan-based subsidiary, PKR Offshore Co., Ltd and Vestas Taiwan Co., Ltd for the maiden deployment of its new Commissioning Service Operations Vessel (CSOV).
According to Marco Polo Marine, the new CSOV, which can accommodate up to 110 people, will be deployed across various offshore wind farms in the Asia Pacific region over three years, based on a minimum utilization commitment per year.
The vessel is currently under construction at Marco Polo Shipyard in Batam, Indonesia, and is expected to start operations in the East China Sea in the second half of 2024.
In September 2022, Marco Polo Marine unveiled its plans to build, own, and operate a Commissioning Service Operations Vessel (CSOV) to meet the increasing demand for support vessels from the offshore wind farm industry in Asia. The 83-meter-long vessel will be the first CSOV to be designed in Asia and will be equipped with a walk-to-work gangway and a 3D motion-compensated crane. It will also feature hybrid-based energy storage systems that will reduce carbon emissions by up to 20%.
“We are thrilled to announce today the formalization of our partnership with Vestas, which marks a critical milestone in our efforts to tap into accelerating demand for support vessels from the region’s offshore wind farm industry,” said Sean Lee, CEO of Marco Polo Marine.
“We are delighted to have achieved this significant milestone with our partner Marco Polo Marine which will enable us to deploy such technically advanced multipurpose vessel to our upcoming operations in Asia Pacific. Given the current shortage of suitable vessels for wind farm operations in the region, we are confident that by entering into such long-term agreement, we are enhancing vessel market maturity and pricing stability. This in turn is expected to lead to improvements in future projects and Vestas' operational readiness," said Dennis Mordhorst, Regional Director Offshore Support, Vestas Asia Pacific.
Marco Polo Marine has cited the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) report which has forecast 680 GW of new wind power capacity to be installed over the next five years (2023-27). This represents 136 GW per year to 2027. Total installed capacity grew to 907 GW globally in 2022, up 78 GW from 2021. This year, new wind capacity could surpass a milestone of 1 terawatt (TW).
In Asia, the GWEC expects new offshore wind installations to exceed 10 GW in 2026 and nearly 15 GW by 2030. By 2050, the region is projected to achieve a total of 613 GW offshore wind installations.
"Against this backdrop of expected growth in Asia, the industry will continue to grapple with a shortage of suitable specialised wind installation vessels. Coupled with the global pivot towards clean energy, Marco Polo Marine foresees expected strong demand for its marine vessels over
the long term," Marco Polo Marine said.