Austal Vietnam, global shipbuilder, has announced the delivery of Hull 424, the Maria Galanta Express, to Oceanoi Limited in Mauritius.
The 41-metre high-speed catamaran ferry will be operated in the Comoros Islands, situated off the southeast coast of Africa, by Société de Gestion et de Transport Maritime (SGTM).
Austral was awarded the AU$15.5 million contract in January last year to design and construct the Maria Galanta Express. Construction officially commenced in March 2020 at Austral’s shipyard in Vung Tau, Vietnam.
The delivery was a significant milestone in the company’s newest shipyard, according to Austal chief executive officer Paddy Gregg.
“This new ship for SGTM is the second vessel we have delivered out of the Vietnam shipyard and highlights the tremendous productivity and efficiency of the local team, who have effectively delivered two vessels in two years,” Gregg said.
“It’s also very pleasing to see another customised variant of our popular, high-speed catamaran ferry design being delivered to yet another new customer and I offer my warmest congratulations to SGTM director Michel Labourdere on the delivery of his latest addition to their fleet.
“Austal has now delivered over 80 vessels in this key, 40 to 50 metre catamaran ferry market since the early 1990s and we continue to receive great interest in our proven designs.”
The “Passenger Express 41” catamaran features a length overall of 41.2 metres, beam of 10.9 metres and draft of 2.0 metres. The vessel can accommodate 400 passengers over two decks and mixed cargo of up to 20 tonnes, loaded via two ramps.
During sea trials, the new catamaran achieved 31.9 knots at 100 per cent Maximum Continuous Rating and has a range of approximately 370 nautical miles. Austral’s catamaran is fitted with the company’s renowned Motion Control System, including active interceptors and T-foils), four MTU-12V2000 M72 engines and four KaMeWa 56A3 waterjets.
Established in 2004 SGTM is the Comoros’ leading ferry company, operating three passenger ships and two freight transport ships between the islands of Mayotte, Anjouan and Great Comoros, carrying more than 100,000 passengers annually.
With the delivery of the Maria Galanta Express, SGTM is now operating two Austal built vessels, joining Marine View (Austal Hull 58) acquired from Japan in 2013.