Chinese yard Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry has won a contract to build a shuttle tanker for shipping condensate produced from the Lingshui 17-2 deep-water gas field in the Qiongdongnan basin of the South China Sea.

The first steel, cut on Tuesday at Cosco’s Qidong facility in eastern China’s Jiangsu province, will ensure the 15,000-deadweight-tonne vessel to be delivered in the middle of next year before Lingshui’s first gas, which is scheduled for late 2021.

It is the first shuttle tanker being built in China that is equipped with a DP system.