Greece-based Diana Shipping Inc. entered into a 10 year term loan agreement for US$82.6 million with The Export-Import Bank of China (“China Eximbank”) having a majority interest and DNB NOR Bank ASA as agent. The purpose of this facility is to partly finance, after delivery, the acquisition cost of the two newbuilding dry bulk carriers of approximately 206,000 dwt each, as previously announced by the company on April 13, 2010.
Diana Shipping Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Simeon Palios, commented: “This new loan facility is a breakthrough for the future of Diana Shipping Inc. since it is the beginning of a long-term relationship with China Eximbank, which is fully owned by the Chinese government and under the direct leadership of the State Council. China Eximbank provides credit to foreign borrowers to finance their purchases of Chinese products, technologies and services. The specific Bank has the same international credit ratings as China's sovereign ratings and is the largest Chinese ship lending bank. The Company believes that the presence of the Chinese Prime Minister, Mr. Wen Jiabao, at the signing demonstrates the Bank’s commitment to well-established shipping companies such as Diana Shipping.”
As previously announced, the company expects to take delivery of the two Newcastlemax dry bulk carriers, for a contract price of US$59 million per vessel, during the second and third quarters of 2012, respectively.