Australian shipbuilder Austal held a steel-cutting ceremony to mark the start of construction on the second 118-meter trimaran ferries for Spanish shipping firm Fred. Olsen Express.

The ceremony for the future Bañaderos Express was held at Austal’s Philippines shipyard. The ferry is due to be delivered by the end of 2020 as part of an AUD 190 million (USD 135.7 million) shipbuilding contract with Fred. Olsen Express for two trimarans, which was awarded to Austal in October 2017.

The Bañaderos Express, and its sister ship, the Bajamar Express, were developed at Austal’s maritime design center in Henderson, Western Australia.

“The Austal-designed and built 127-metre trimaran, the Benchijigua Express, has become the benchmark for blue-water commercial ferry operations since it entered service in 2005, exceeding expectations for performance, speed and customer experience in the Canary Islands,” David Singleton, Austal CEO, said.

“These new 118-metre trimaran vessels will continue to be a game-changer in the international high-speed ferry market when these vessels enter service for Fred. Olsen.”

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