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China promotes high-quality development of shipbuilding industry

Updated: Sep 19, 2023 By Yang Yang Print
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Adora Magic City, China's first domestically made large cruise ship, completed its first trial voyage on July 24. [Photo provided to]

China has promoted high-quality development and picked the "pearls in the crown" of the shipbuilding industry, Xinhua News Agency reported on Friday.

Due to the extremely difficult design and construction, large cruise ships, large liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers and aircraft carriers are known as the shipbuilding industry's three "pearls in the crown".

China has picked all the three "pearls in the crown" in the shipbuilding industry, as the nation's first domestically built large cruise ship, Adora Magic City, completed its first trial voyage in Shanghai this July.

The successful construction of more and more high-end ship types has become the best footnote in the high-quality development of China's shipbuilding industry.

Being able to build such ships showcases a country's industrial strength as well as its scientific and technological level.

China's first home-made large cruise ship started construction at Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding in October 2019, undocked on June 6, and conducted its first trial voyage from July 17 to 24.

The Adora Magic City, which is 323.6 meters long, 37.2 meters wide and 72 meters tall - roughly the height of a 25-story residential building, is expected to be delivered at the end of this year.

The construction of its sister ship, the second domestic-built large cruise ship, began in August 2022, showcasing that China has taken an important step toward the mass and serialized construction of large cruise ships.

Meanwhile, China is also making efforts to enhance the international competitiveness of "made-in-China" large LNG carriers through iterative innovation.

Dubbed as "super freezer truck at sea", large LNG carriers are internationally recognized ships with high technology, high added value and high reliability.

Since China delivered the first large LNG carriers in 2008, China's shipbuilding enterprises adhere to independent research and development, and continue to iterate and update relevant technologies.

China's share of global orders for large LNG carriers exceeded 30 percent in 2022, hitting a record high.

From January to July 2023, China undertook 18 large LNG carriers, accounting for 35 percent of the global total, with a further increased market share, according to data of the China Association of the National Shipbuilding Industry (CANSI).

Furthermore, Chinese shipping enterprises are also vigorously promoting the digital transformation of ship construction.

Advanced intelligent production equipment and systems, such as automated steel delivering system and laser welding robots, are running efficiently and orderly at an intelligent manufacturing workshop of China Merchants Industrial's Haimen base.

"The production efficiency of the workshop has increased by more than 20 percent compared with the traditional model," said Mei Zhonghua, manager of China Merchants Industrial's Haimen base.

China's shipbuilding industry's biggest advantage is capability as more ships are self-designed and supported and levels of digitalization and engineers' skills continue to improve, said Li Yanqing, secretary-general of CANSI.

China's shipbuilding industry will further accelerate the transformation of green and intelligent development, and constantly promote the optimization and upgrading of manufacturing capacity, Li added.

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