Western Marine Shipyard, the country's leading shipbuilder, has made a tugboat for Payra Sea Port.
The tugboat, Tiakhali-1, was launched at the Karnaphuli river in Chattogram yesterday. After a sea trial, the port authorities will receive the vessel, said Shahidul Bashar, assistant general manager for commercial of the shipbuilder.
A tugboat is a secondary boat which helps in a ship's mooring or berthing operations by either towing or pushing the vessel towards a port.
The tugboat would help the port located in the southern coastal district of Patuakhali operate its activities through swift handling of inbound and outbound ships in the seaport area.
The tugboat, which was built at a cost of Tk 35 crore, has a capacity of 60-tonne bollard pull power. The tugboat will speed up port activities and help increase port surveillance, Western Marine Shipyard said in a press release.
The company built the tugboat after winning the work order in a tender, Bashar said.
It has already supplied three tugboats to Chittagong Port and exported one to the Gambia. It also delivered two workboats to the Mongla Port and one to the Chittagong Port, he added.
Since its inception in 2000 in Chattogram, the yard has built more than 150 ships for local and international clients and are currently building more than 33 ships.
The vessels include deep-sea fishing trawlers, port utility vessels, tugs, container ships, tankers, bulk carriers, and passenger ships.
Western Marine has so far exported 32 ocean-going vessels to clients in countries such as Germany, Denmark, Finland, Tanzania, New Zealand, Kenya, the UAE, India, Ecuador, Pakistan, the Gambia and Uganda.
It exported two 5,200 dead-weight tonnage capacity cargo ships to India at the beginning of 2000, the press release said.
The shipbuilder employs 3,500 people, including skilled and semi-skilled labourers. More than 500 professionals, including marine experts, mechanical experts, electrical engineers and naval architects are working at the shipyard in the Patiya upazila of Chattogram, according to the company's website.