Ukraine turns scrap river barges into new cargo fleet, welding together decrepit ferries

The Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company has built the second large-capacity SLG barge using old lighter vessels, the government reports
The Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company has built the second large-capacity SLG barge using old lighter vessels, the government reports

The Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company has constructed its second large-capacity SLG barge using old lighter vessels, the Ministry for Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Development reported on Facebook on Feb. 13.

The first barge was launched at the end of 2023.

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“In 2023, the team at the Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company began constructing a non-self-propelled fleet for the first time in a long while,” said Oleksandr Kubrakov, Deputy Prime Minister for Reconstruction of Ukraine and Minister of Communities, Territories, and Infrastructure Development.

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Kubrakov highlighted the company’s initiative to repurpose over 80 lighters into new SLG vessels, reducing costs significantly compared to building from scratch. All construction occurs in Ukraine, fostering job creation and bolstering the regional economy and inland waterways industry. Importantly, these efforts support logistics and grain exports. Funding for the project comes solely from the Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company’s own resources, without government subsidies.

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The new SLG barge boasts a carrying capacity of 2,200 tons, a length of 76.5 meters, and a draft of 3.1 meters. Utilizing idle or underutilized 40-meter lighters, the company employs a modular construction approach, joining two lighters with an insert from a third vessel.

The Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company is a prominent player in Ukraine’s shipping sector, operating along the Danube River from its mouth to the port of Kelheim, Germany. Its fleet comprises 75 self-propelled vessels and 245 non-self-propelled vessels.

An SLG barge is assembled by docking two lighters with an insert from a third vessel.

Notably, the Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company initiated a container caravan to Romania in June 2022 and secured a tender from HBIS Serbia, a major European steel producer, in January 2023.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine