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Bahri secure $133.2m in Islamic funding for five new chemical carriers

Bahri secure $133.2m in Islamic funding for five new chemical carriers
National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) has confirmed subsidiary National Chemical Carriers (Bahri Chemicals) has secured $133.2m in Islamic financing to purchase five chemical carriers.

Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation and BNP Paribas will provide the funding in the form of a murabaha facility for a 10-year period, Bahri said in a bourse statement to the Saudi stock exchange Tadawul. A murabaha is a cost-plus-profit arrangement which complies with Islamic finance standards.

Bahri Chemicals claims to operate the largest fleet of chemical carriers in the Middle East, reported in Bahri’s H1 results announcement to stand at 31 vessels.

It includes what is believed to be the largest chemical tanker in the world, the 75,000dwt, the NCC FAJR, and five MR product tankers built in 2014 at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard in South Korea.

In 2015, Bahri Chemicals’ fleet completed 208 voyages carrying a total of more than 7 million tonnes of cargo, including liquid chemicals including methanol, MTBE and glycol as well as Clean Petroleum Products including jet fuel, naphtha and gasoline. It also transported vegetables oils.

Seatrade Maritime News reported last month that Bahri planned to expand it’s already sizeable involvement in the VLCC sector by as many as 15 vessels after announcing a deal to launch a $1.5bn investment fund with Arab Petroleum Investments Corp (Apicorp).

Bahri later announced a net profit of SAR 1.116m ($297.59m) for the first half of 2016, up 50% period-on-period. 

It attributed the result to the acquisition of “several” VLCCs and chemical tankers in 2016, higher crude oil transportation spot rates compared to the corresponding period, an uptick in performance from its general cargo division as well as a decrease in average bunker prices.