Australian mining magnate Clive Palmer has floated plans to build a fleet of world class luxury liners, including a 21st-century version of the Titanic.
Palmer announced today he has signed a memorandum of understanding with state-owned Chinese company CSC Jinling Shipyard to build Titanic II.
With the latest navigation and safety systems, Titanic II will sail in the northern hemisphere, with her maiden voyage from England to North America scheduled for late 2016.
Palmer told reporters in Brisbane the rebuild was a tribute to the spirit of the men and women who worked on the original Titanic, which sank after hitting an iceberg on April 15, 1912.
The 100th anniversary of one of the world's deadliest peacetime maritime disasters was observed this month, commemorating the death of 1514 passengers and crew.
Asked if the ship could sink, Mr Palmer told reporters: "Of course it will sink if you put a hole in it."
He added: "It is going to be designed so it won't sink.
"It will be designed as a modern ship with all the technology to ensure that doesn't happen.
"But of course if you are superstitious like you are, you never know what could happen."
Palmer said design work in conjunction with a historical research team had commenced on the new Titanic.
It would have the same dimensions as its predecessor, with 840 rooms and nine decks.
Palmer has established a new shipping company, Blue Star Line Pty Ltd, which has commissioned CSC Jinling Shipyard to build and co-ordinate the construction of Titanic II in China.
The Chinese navy has been invited to escort Titanic II on its maiden voyage to New York.