CENTRAL GULF PREPARES TO BUILD U.S.-FLAG VESSEL FOR LIBERTY SHIPPING
Central Gulf Lines has asked the U.S. Maritime Administration for permission to build a 52,000-deadweight-ton U.S.-flag bulk vessel on behalf of Liberty Shipping Group Ltd. Partnership.
The New Orleans-based carrier subsidiary of International Shipholding Corp. plans to build the vessel in Japanese shipyard Oshima Shipbuilding Co., once MarAd approves the transfer of its Section 615 waiver. Under the 1936 Merchant Marine Act, this waiver allows a carrier to build U.S.-flag-qualified vessels in foreign shipyards and enter them into the cargo preference program without the three-year waiting period.
Once the builder’s certificate is issued by Oshima shipyard, Central Gulf will issue a bill of sale for the vessel to Liberty Shipping, based in Lake Success, N.Y. Liberty Shipping will use the vessel in the U.S. cargo preference trade.
Liberty Shipping had previously bought two unused Section 615 waivers to build two other 50,000-deadweight-ton U.S.-flag vessels in the Oshima shipyard. The vessels, the Liberty Glory and Liberty Grace, joined the company’s fleet last year. Liberty Shipping currently operates seven U.S.-flag bulk vessels.