The second of two new 4,900t oil tankers for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) has been launched. The vessel entered the water in a ceremony held on 2 February at the Hashihama facilities of Japan’s Shin Kurushima Dockyard. The vessels will be primarily used to transport fuel from oil refineries to JMSDF frontline bases and facilities, particularly on Japan’s remote southern islands in the East China Sea, some of which – like the Senkaku Islands – are controlled by Japan but also claimed by China. The first was launched last October, and is scheduled to enter service in April, while the second is set to be handed over to the JMSDF in July.
These ships will be used to transport fuel to front-line bases in Okinawa and the Nansei Islands, or to fuel anchored JMSDF vessels. As such, the tanker doesn’t have “fueling stations” and can not perform “UNREP” (underway replenishment) missions. Commercial vessels have been used to provide this service, but it has been reported that the JMSDF decided to acquire its own dedicated capability as companies could potentially refuse to do this during wartime. No further details were provided about the vessels physical characteristics or capabilities. The exact size, performance figures and general characteristics of the YOT ships have not been released publicly yet.
Shin Kurushima Hashihama Dockyard, located in Hashihama, Imabari city, Ehime prefecture, has a long corporate history as the dockyard birthplace. We are proud of the solid technology amassed through the conpany long history and tradition since the business began. We handle shipbuilding, repair and reconstruction of small-sized unique vessels here. Shin Kurushima Hashihama Dockyard have obtained ISO 9001, the standard established by International Organization for Standardization on quality management systems. Thus, we make serious efforts to manufacture high-quality products all the time.