Australian mining magnate and National Living Treasure Clive Palmer has made formal his intentions to construct a near-exact replica of the Titanic, and sail it from England to North America in late 2016.

"It will be every bit as luxurious as the original Titanic but of course it will have state-of-the-art 21st-century technology and the latest navigation and safety systems," Palmer told reporters.

The Titanic II will consist of 840 rooms across nine decks — much like the original — but will run on diesel in lieu of coal, and will feature "an enlarged rudder and bow thrusters for improved manoeuvrability."

The project will be a joint undertaking of Palmer's newly christened Blue Star Line (recalling the Titanic's White Star Line), and China's CSC Jinling Shipyard. In addition to being built in China, the Titanic II will also be accompanied on its maiden voyage by the Chinese navy.

Asked if he is concerned the sequel will suffer the same fate as the original, Palmer responded, "It is going to be designed so it won't sink," but "of course it will sink if you put a hole in it."

[photo via AP]