Feb 20, 2021 News
With over 150 years experience …
By Kiana Wilburg
Kaieteur News – With over 150 years of experience in shipbuilding and the repair and maintenance of vessels, the Guyana National Industrial Company Incorporated (GNIC), formerly known as GNEC, remains one of the most significant contributors to the upkeep of the nation’s maritime industry along with the services and manufacturing sectors.
In fact, the company has been a staunch advocate for not only maintaining a high level of performance but ensuring that as the oil and gas industry blossoms, more Guyanese are given an opportunity to play a leading role in their respective areas of expertise.
Speaking to Kaieteur News recently, GNIC’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Clinton Williams, did not hesitate to note that the entity is well known for its capacity to build and repair ocean-going and riverain vessels, which include Coastal Trawlers, Passenger Ferry Vessels (T & H D), Suction Hopper Dredge, Tugs, Pontoons, and Launches. Williams articulated that these are only some of the multitude of marine vessels built and repaired with the tested skills of GNIC’s Craftsmen, Technicians, and Engineers.
Over the last five years, and more recently, last month, he shared that private companies, agencies and state-owned organizations have utilized the Corporation’s facilities and expertise in fabrication, welding, machining, and constructing large and small industrial engineering components.
With respect to recent emergency works, management at GNIC shared that the Transport and Harbour Department had requested emergency repairs to MV Kimbia, since the vessel was said to have developed major problems while being assigned for use in the North West District. Kaieteur News was made to understand that the vessel was drydocked on January 15, 2021, and major works were done to the hull, along with sandblasting, crop and renewal of hull and frames, painting of the superstructure, and installing zinc anodes. The repair works were completed as per deadline and undocked on January 29, 2021.
For those who may not be aware, the MV Kimbia was built by Damen Shipyard in Holland in 1980. The vessel is known to ply various waterways to transport passengers and cargo with limited accommodation for vehicles on deck. Over the years, GNIC has always done major structural repairs and contributed to the existence of the vessel so that it can continue to traverse the various waterways. In evaluating GNIC’s performance, it is pellucid that contractual conditions were satisfied on quality, timeframe, and scope for the vessel’s seaworthiness.
SERVICE TO MARAD
GNIC has a longstanding relationship with the Maritime Administration Department, particularly as it relates to doing maintenance work for its Dredge Steve N, which is said to be its largest vessel. This dredge was designed by Damen Shipyard and constructed in GNEC’s Drydock in 1978. It is used to clear the channels in Guyana’s major waterways in order to allow for proper navigation of ships within the harbour. Recently, the MV Steve N was berthed at GNIC’s Wharf for repairs to Draghead Sheaves. Checks by Kaieteur News with MARAD revealed that GNIC satisfied all requirements on the repair works and the vessel left on February 3, 2021.
It should be noted that in 2016, the MV Steve N was out of operation for critical repairs. This news agency had reported back then that GNIC was able to fully complete all the repair work and bring the vessel up to specification with the assistance of staff with a wealth of experience. Works carried out on the Dredge included fabrication works to the hull, hopper and ballast tanks; repairs to propulsion system; propeller shafts; bushes and rudder; sandblasting and painting; electrical works including installation of three 5,000 BTU air condition units and installation of two generators to name a few.
With respect to other works conducted by GNIC, Kaieteur News understands that Motor Vessels MV Torani and MV Malali went through major refurbishment throughout the years since constructed by GNEC. Its contributions and structural refurbishment to the vessels allow their services to continue to this very day.
Additionally, MARAD’s Motor Tug Aruka is being used primarily as a Pilot Launch, to guide incoming and outgoing vessels, but it also assists in the movement of barges, boats, and tugs around Port Georgetown. This newspaper understands that this Tug was recently pulled onto GNIC’s Slipway for repairs. The following scope of works included sandblasting and painting of hull, superstructure, and deck; installation of a new generator; repairs to the propulsion system and renewal of electrical cables and fittings; and the installation of hydraulic steerings and rudder indicator. After this was successfully completed, the MT Aruka was de-slipped on January 27, 2021.
As regards its work for the Guyana Oil Company, this publication understands that GNIC has been engaging this company over the past 30 years in the fabrication of several pieces of machinery and storage tanks. On April 08, 2020, for example, GNIC had commenced fabrication of three10,000 Barrels Fuel Tanks (48ft (d) x 42ft (h)) for the Guyana Oil Company. The scope of works included design, fabrication and assembling. This project was done successfully in accordance with specification on January 31, 2021
The entity is also accredited with designing and assembling a massive 40ft x 15ft water storage tank along with several medium and small tanks for GuyOil.
Further to the foregoing, GNIC has been instrumental in providing significant fabrication works for the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority (NDIA).
In 2016, GNIC had fabricated and delivered a new batch of Unifloat Pontoons for NDIA’s East Bank Demerara Water Conservancy, which is being utilized in the Ministry of Agriculture’s World Bank Funding Flood Control Programme.
GNIC had also constructed one Unifloat Pontoon and punt in 2009. This newspaper was informed in 2018 that a (96ft x 26ft) Barge was also constructed. GNIC had also supplied to NDIA, two excavators together with a Suction Dredge to do salvage works to all the outfalls along the Coastline and Rivers.
Additionally, pontoons constructed by GNIC continue to exceed the designed specification and quality assurance. This newspaper understands that construction is always done under the close supervision of a highly certified and experienced welding/fabrication Quality Assurance Engineer. GNIC has also been contributing to the irrigation sector for many years.
Furthermore, GNIC would have completed several critical pieces of work for the Demerara Harbour Bridge (DHB). In 2018, it was called upon to fabricate 40 buoys, all of which were executed and completed in record time in accordance with specifications. In 2020, an additional 25 buoys were also fabricated and completed in a specific timeframe to the satisfaction of the company.
Kaieteur News was also told that in 2019, docking and repairs to DHB’s Tug “Rickford L” were also completed in record time. Sterling work was also delivered for the Berbice Bridge in 2018.
To be continued…
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