Damen Yichang Shipyard in China hosted a steel cutting ceremony with a difference. As a result of safety measures surrounding the global COVID-19 outbreak, the occasion of first steel cut for a Damen RoPax Ferry 6716 for the Government of Timor-Leste was marked by a digital gathering. (27 April).
Attendees of the online ceremony included representatives of the Government of Timor-Leste and Damen employees in both China and the Netherlands. The delegates gathered at their individual computers at 14.50 China Standard time (15.50 in Timor-Lest and 08.50 in the Netherlands) to listen to speeches. After this, Damen Yichang Shipyard General Manager Mr Deng Zhiping pushed the button and the first steel was cut.
When completed, the 67 x 16 metres vessel will operate a route between Timor-Leste’s capital Dili, the Oecusse enclave and the island of Ataúro. She will carry up to 308 passengers, plus vehicles and goods. The project is co-funded by the governments of Timor-Leste and Germany and is scheduled to begin operations in 2021.