First Tier-III Rotortugs in operation.

On 16 September 2021 the christening ceremony of two newly built tugs “VB FLANDES and VB SAMBA” took place in the port of Zeebrugge.

In 2021 Boluda Towage put into service two newly built Rotortugs, the “VB FLANDES and VB SAMBA”, for the extended concession for towage services in the port of Zeebrugge.

In addition to efficient, smooth and safe shipping, sustainability is also an essential part of the concession agreement between Port Authority Zeebrugge and Boluda Towage. The newly-built tugs are complying with IMO Tier-III emissions requirements and are certified with the highest fire-fighting standards. The emissions of the tugboats, e.g. nitrogen oxides, will be reduced with 80%. Shore power also will become the norm for moored tugboats, so that these can switch off their engines when inactive and during the rest-period of the crew.

The naming ceremony for the tug was performed by the Lady Sponsors:

  • VB FLANDES : Mrs. Veronique van de Reijt, wife of Mr. Rob Smeets – COO Port of Antwerp
  • VB SAMBA : Mrs. Chantal Orlans – Director Corporate Affairs Port Authority Zeebrugge


The VB FLANDES and VB SAMBA, 80-tonnes bollard pull ART80-32 Advanced Rotortugs, were built at Damen Albwardy Sharjah Shipyard in the Emirates. The triangular propulsion configuration of Rotortug ensures a great redundancy level and faster handling, while providing enhanced safety and highly accurate manoeuvring under all circumstances.