China’s Yangzijiang Shipbuilding has inked letters of intent with four shipping companies in Europe for a total of 12 conventional-fuelled product tanker newbuildings worth about $700m.

Oslo-listed Hafnia and three Greek companies — Metrostar Management, Pantheon Tankers and Union Maritime — were named as the shipowners that have provisionally booked the tanker slots at the shipyard, which is better known for building container ships and bulk carriers.

Shipbuilding sources said Pantheon Tankers and Union Maritime have each signed up for two 114,000-dwt aframax product carriers, while Metrostar Management has inked two LR1 and two LR2 vessels.