June 21, 2009 / 2:07 PM / 11 years ago

Shipbuilder Rongsheng wins $484 mln Oman deal

MUSCAT, June 21 (Reuters) - Chinese shipbuilder Jiangsu Rongsheng Heavy Industries Co, which is aiming to sell shares to the public in 2009, won a $484 million deal to build four ships for Oman Shipping Co, a government official said on Sunday.

The vessels would carry exports from an iron ore pellet plant in northern Oman which is expected to begin production in the second half of 2010. Brazil’s Companhia Vale do Rio Doce (Vale) VALE5.SA (RIO.N) is building the $1 billion plant.

“The vessels will be delivered by the end of 2011 or beginning of 2012 and will be chartered to Vale for its exports,” the official from Oman’s Tender Board told Reuters.

The owner of the vessels is state-owned Oman Shipping Co which has said it plans to spend $4 billion on expanding its fleet.

Rongsheng is aiming for an initial public offering possibly in Hong Kong this year, its president said in April.

Rongsheng, backed by foreign funds including Goldman Sachs (GS.N) and U.S. fund D.E. Shaw, is seeking to tap capital markets to fund growth.

It eventually aims to compete with much bigger state-owned rivals such as Guangzhou Shipyard International Co (600685.SS) (0317.HK). (Reporting by Saleh al-Shaibany; Editing by Rupert Winchester)

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