Shipbuilders in China are pressing ahead with the production of offshore wind vessels as related orders are surging up along with growing offshore wind power installed capacity in the country.
The number of offshore wind farms under construction and in operation across China is increasing dramatically, stepping in the fast-paced rhythms in surging demand for offshore wind turbine maintenance and installation vessels.
A shipyard manager said that their offshore wind power ships are now in short supply due to a surge in orders.
"We have seen booming orders, especially for offshore wind equipment. The orders we received last year were 240 percent of that the year before. In 2023, orders for our offshore wind power equipment are expected to maintain a stable growth trend," said Guo Wenjun, chairman of a shipbuilding enterprise in Qidong City of east China's Jiangsu Province.
By 2030, offshore wind capacity worldwide is expected to reach over 250 gigawatts (GW), with a total of 730 offshore wind farms and 30,000 wind turbines in operation, according to statistics from Clarksons, a shipping industry research institute.
By then, there will be a shortfall of about 15 wind turbine installation vessels, while the shortfall of wind turbine maintenance vessels will expand from the current 30 to more than 130, according to Clarksons.
"In the next two or three years, the market demand for small maintenance vessels will grow at a faster pace. Because the wind farms are far away from the land, it takes longer for each operation to complete, hence the workload is relatively heavy, so more ships are needed to transport related personnel to the operation site. At present, many operation and maintenance companies are planning to place orders to build such vessels," said Xu Zhihai, deputy director of the energy technology department of Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute under the country's largest shipbuilder China State Shipbuilding Corporation.
The opinions expressed herein are the author's and not necessarily those of The Xinde Marine News.
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