Russia's Sovcomflot has arranged more financing with domestic lender VEB.RF Group for new tankers.

VEB Leasing will fund the construction of three LNG-fuelled MR ships at Russia's Zvezda Shipyard.

The order was signed in December and VEB has been tipped since then as a finance option.

Delivery of the 51,000-dwt tankers will be in 2022 and 2023.

They will transport petroleum products and gas condensate under a 20-year time charter agreement with Russian energy group Novatek.

The ice-class 1B units will operate in challenging ice conditions, in particular within the Baltic Sea, Sovcomflot said.

Sovcomflot CEO Sergey Frank said: "The company already successfully operates six new-generation aframax tankers, which are powered by LNG fuel.

"Five more LNG-powered vessels have been ordered by Sovcomflot from the Zvezda shipyard and will be built over the next few years. We welcome the plans of Russian shipbuilders to create modern large-tonnage LNG-fuelled vessels which, of course, represent the future of world shipping".

VEB Leasing last year approved deals to finance two aframaxes for the owner at the new Zvezda yard.

It has been previously reported that the new loan is estimated at RUB 10bn ($152.4m).