Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Holds Christening and Launch Ceremony in Shimonoseki for LNG Bunkering Vessel KEYS Azalea

TOKYO, Jul 12, 2023 – (JCN Newswire) – Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group company based in Yokohama, today held a christening and launch ceremony for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering vessel, the first to operate in western Japan, built under contract for KEYS Bunkering West Japan Co., Ltd. The ceremony, conducted in the presence of representatives from the companies involved, took place at the Enoura Plant at MHI’s Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture. The new vessel, christened KEYS Azalea, is scheduled for handover in March 2024 following outfitting work and sea trials.

The KEYS Azalea is equipped with a dual fuel generator engine capable of using both LNG and marine diesel oil as fuel, a first for LNG bunkering vessel in Japan. When operating in gas mode, it will provide exceptional environmental performance with considerably reduced emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen oxide (NOx), sulfur oxide (SOx), and particulate matter (PM). LNG has a smaller environmental impact than the heavy oil conventionally used as marine fuel, and is expected to be a bridge solution for fuel decarbonization. Mitsubishi Shipbuilding will contribute to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the maritime industry by building ships to supply LNG fuel.

KEYS Bunkering West Japan is a joint venture company established in February 2022 to supply LNG fuel for ships and operate a coastal transportation business in the Kyushu and Setouchi Regions, with investment from Kyushu Electric Power Company, Inc.NYK Line, ITOCHU ENEX CO., LTD., and SAIBU GAS CO., LTD. The company is promoting decarbonization in the marine industry through this business project handling LNG fuel.

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, as part of MHI Group’s strategic initiatives for energy transition, will make use of the gas handling technologies and experience it has accumulated from building LNG carrier vessels. Through this business project involving low environmental-impact LNG fuel, Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, as a maritime system integrator, aims to further the decarbonization of the marine industry, and realize a carbon neutral world.

About MHI Group

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group is one of the world’s leading industrial groups, spanning energy, smart infrastructure, industrial machinery, aerospace and defense. MHI Group combines cutting-edge technology with deep experience to deliver innovative, integrated solutions that help to realize a carbon neutral world, improve the quality of life and ensure a safer world. For more information, please visit or follow our insights and stories on

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