MSC Group and Chantiers de l’Atlantique have celebrated two significant new-build milestones for the construction two new vessels.
MSC World Europa and MSC Euribia will become the first Liquified Natural Gas-powered (LNG) vessels to join the MSC Cruises fleet next year - representing an investment of €3 billion in such ships.
Construction on World Europa II is also due to commence in early 2023.
Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman, MSC Cruises, said: “Today is another important milestone in our journey towards net zero emissions by 2050 for our marine operations.
“Following billions of euros of investment, we are announcing significant construction developments in not just one but two of our next generation LNG-powered vessels bringing us ever closer to our vision of an emissions free cruise industry.
“As the cleanest fuel currently available at scale for our operations, LNG is at the vanguard of the momentous energy transition we must go through.”
The traditional coin ceremony tradition took place as the keel was laid for MSC Cruises’ second LNG-powered ship, MSC Euribia, which will be one of the most environmentally high performing contemporary vessels built in France.
Anne Claire Juventin, responsible for quality control from the Chantiers de l’Atlantique, and Valentina Mancini, brand manager from MSC Cruises performed the traditional maritime ritual as godmothers representing the ship owner and the shipbuilder.
Laurent Castaing, general manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, added: “It is indeed a very special moment we are living today.
“This is not only because these ships are respectively the 15th and the 16th we are building for MSC Cruises - which shows the outstanding quality of the relationship we established between our two companies since the 1990s.
“This is not only because they will rank among the largest and the finest of the world’s cruise market.
“But it is also and especially because they represent a giant step towards what the cruise ships of the future will look like.
“At their delivery, they will have the best carbon footprint of the market, in terms of emissions per passenger and per day.”