Offshore staffSEOUL, South Korea — Daewoo Shipbuilding Marine (DSME) has signed the first contract for the acquisition of four LNG carriers from the large Qatar LNG project, according to a recent DSME news release.DSME CEO Pak Doo-sun said on June 7 that it had received four 174,000-cu.m-class LNG carriers from the Korean consortium consisting of H. R. Line Shipping (consortium leader), Fan Ocean and SK Shipping. The vessels will be built at the Okpo Shipyard and delivered to ship owners by first-quarter 2025 for use in Qatar Energy's North Field Expansion Project.The LNG carrier received this time is a 174,000-cu.-m class large LNG carrier and is equipped with a low-pressure dual-fuel propulsion engine (ME-GA) and a re-liquefaction facility, which can greatly reduce the emission of air pollutants. The 22 vessels that DSME has received this year are all dual-fuel propulsion vessels. In addition, the latest technologies, such as the company's DS4 smartship solution, will be applied to ensure efficient vessel operation.Qatar, the world's largest LNG producer, has been in the process of expanding its annual LNG production from the existing 7.7 million tonnes to 102.6 million tonnes. As part of this, in 2020, Qatar Energy signed an agreement with DSME to reserve LNG carrier lines. The deal is the first vessel to be built under the schedule reservation agreement, with additional orders expected in the future.DSME has received and delivered 26 vessels, nearly half of the total 53 in the Qatar project from 2004 to 2007. It also has the capacity to build 20 LNG carriers per year.To date, DSME has secured 24 ships/units worth about $54.7 billion, including 16 LNG carriers, six container ships, one marine plant and one window maintenance ship, achieving about 61.5% of the target of $89 billion. That's nearly double the $27.4 billion it received in the same period last year.