"The keels of five IMO2 Novaya Armada Project RST22 tankers have been laid at the shipyard," it said.
Krasnoye Sormovo and Palmali signed the tanker contract last December. Prior to that, in February 2007, they clinched a deal for the first four tankers. The shipyard will thus build a total of nine vessels, with the last one due to be constructed in 2009.
The project, designed by the Odessa-based Maritime Engineering Bureau, has the following specifications: length, 139.95 m; breadth, 16.60 m; deadweight sea/river, 7,000/4,700 tons; draught, 4.6/3.6 m; speed, 10.5 knots.
Last August, Krasnoye Sormovo rolled out a Project 19619 tanker with a deadweight of 13,000 tons for Palmali. The vessel, christened Massaly, after a region in southeast Azerbaijan, will operate in the Caspian Sea and be based in Azerbaijan.
The tanker, designed to carry crude and oil derivatives, has a double hull, preventing oil spills in the event of accidents.
The Massaly, 150 m long, 17.3 m wide and with a crew of 21 and capable of 20-day long voyages without refueling, is the largest tanker in the Caspian basin, capable of calling at any port and accessing other seas via the Volga-Baltic sea route.