Proman Stena Bulk, the joint venture between leading tanker company Stena Bulk and the leading methanol producer Proman, has formally named the third of its state-of-the-art methanol-fuelled 49,900 DWT tankers Stena Promise, in a ceremony held last week in Rotterdam.
The naming ceremony, which was held near the city’s famous Erasmusbrug, saw dignitaries and guests from both Proman and Stena Bulk, as well as from across the maritime industry, gather to celebrate the methanol-fuelled joint venture fleet. This was the first Naming Ceremony for a methanol-fuelled vessel held in the Port of Rotterdam.
The attendees heard speeches from David Cassidy, CEO of Proman, Erik Hånell, President & CEO of Stena Bulk, and Mr Gary Ge Xiujiang, Deputy Managing Director of Sales Department, Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI), the shipyard that built Proman Stena Bulk’s tankers.
Dr Hilary Cassidy, the vessel’s godmother, successfully ended the ceremony with a traditional champagne christening. All guests were welcomed on board the Stena Promise for a short visit.
The naming ceremony was held in Rotterdam in recognition of the port’s unique contribution to the maritime decarbonisation agenda. The Port is the largest methanol hub in north-western Europe, and ship-to-ship bunkering has taken place at the port successfully several times, including for the first JV vessel Stena Pro Patria in August 2022.
There is growing momentum around methanol as a marine fuel, with over 106 methanol-fuelled ships on order as of the end of March according to analysis from class society DNV. This includes container lines, dry bulk and tanker orders, as well as leading names from the cruise sector.
Stena Promise was delivered in November 2022. All four vessels in the IMOIIMeMax series have demonstrated an unprecedentedly low EEDI (Energy Efficiency Design Index) value while running on methanol.
Proman Stena Bulk’s IMOIIMeMax vessel series benefits from industry-leading design improvements and technologies to maximise energy efficiency, resulting in an EEDI 11% below the 2025 Phase 3 requirements – setting a new benchmark for methanol-fuelled tankers and further proving the operational viability of methanol as a marine fuel.
During its commercial operations, Stena Promise has already been operating full time on conventional methanol from natural gas. The vessel will use approximately 11,500 tonnes of methanol as fuel per year, significantly reducing GHG emissions compared to conventional marine fuels.
Speaking about the naming ceremony, David Cassidy, Chief Executive of Proman, said: “Stena Promise is the third state-of-the-art methanol tanker we have brought to market with Stena Bulk, and the first fully Proman-owned vessel in our fleet. She is a very special vessel for us, and it is fantastic to be able to use her naming ceremony as a driver to convene with partners, friends and industry leaders in Rotterdam at a pivotal time for the shipping industry’s low-carbon transition.
“We need to ensure that regulatory incentives and market-based measures continue to drive capital to projects which can deliver real, meaningful and immediate emissions reductions. And to do that we need to work with partners across the entire industry and shipping value chain to make green shipping a reality.”
Erik Hånell, President and CEO of Stena Bulk, added: “The naming ceremony for Stena Promise is another step in our cooperation between Stena Bulk and Proman to prove the viability of methanol as a marine fuel. By gathering in Rotterdam – one of the industry’s most important bunkering hubs – we are once again underlining that methanol operation is technically feasible today. We are proud to continue working with our partners at Proman to advance our shared vision for methanol.”