Known for its Aframax tankers, the Yokosuka-based yard will exit the shipbuilding business once it completes its existing newbuilding backlog.

Sumitomo Heavy Industries, the parent company, cited difficulties in sustaining the shipbuilding business despite implementing measures such as limiting vessel orders and overhauling the shipbuilding system.

Intense competition from Chinese and South Korean shipyards, which dominate the orderbook, has posed challenges for Japanese shipbuilders.

Sumitomo highlighted the need to address rising material costs, fluctuating vessel prices, and persistent competition as factors influencing the decision.

The company will continue after-sales service for previously constructed vessels and ship repair business. Additionally, Sumitomo plans to focus on commercializing offshore wind foundations and related vessels in the renewables sector.

The shipbuilding business, rooted in Uraga Senkyo Corporation since 1879, saw the establishment of Sumitomo Heavy Industries Marine & Engineering in 2003, having built over 100 aframaxes during its history.