On Wednesday, December 14, 2011, STX Finland Oy's Rauma Shipyard performed the keel-laying of an innovative fisheries research vessel newbuilding no. 1378 ordered by the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources of the Republic of Namibia. The vessel will be approximately 62 metres long and, when delivered, she will operate as a research vessel gathering information for example on fish stocks and their living environment. The vessel will provide some 250 man-years of labour to the shipyard.
The keel-laying was performed according to old tradition. The event was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources of the Republic of Namibia, the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Embassy of Namibia in Finland, the classification society Bureau Veritas, STX Finland, and members of the press.
The versatile and modern research vessel, to be delivered in spring 2012, will meet the latest performance criteria. Particular attention has been paid to the vessel's serviceability and low maintenance costs. The vessel will provide accommodation for 44 crew members and research personnel.
“The construction process of the vessel has advanced according to plan at the STX Rauma shipyard and the cooperation between the client, the classification society, and the partner companies has functioned well,” explained Timo Suistio, Director of STX Rauma shipyard. “The work will continue with an intensive outfitting phase. The ship will be launched in spring 2012, after which the testing and introduction of its systems will begin,” Suistio continued.