Abu Dhabi’s National Petroleum Construction Company (NPCC) signed memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with two Chinese state-owned energy contractors on 9 September at the World Energy Congress in Abu Dhabi.

NPCC signed separate MoUs with China Petroleum Engineering & Construction Corporation (CPECC), affiliated to China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), and China National Chemical Engineering Company (CNCEC) to jointly explore opportunities in Abu Dhabi’s onshore and offshore oil and gas market, as well as “other strategic areas of interest”, it said in a statement.

For the agreement with CPECC, NPCC will explore potential opportunities to cooperate on engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) projects that will create value for both contractors, and exchange information, data and insights, where relevant, for possible cooperation on future projects in the energy sector.

“The agreement will enable both entities to facilitate discussions for cooperating on future projects by leveraging the strengths of the entities in building the energy ecosystem and infrastructure,” NPCC said.

For the agreement with CNCEC, the two firms will seek to cooperate on potential projects for Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and will explore opportunities for financing services on Adnoc projects.

“They will also evaluate opportunities on existing Adnoc projects in addition to leveraging mutual strengths in financial and industrial capital, technological advances, management strengths and the integration of resources to strengthen cooperation in the Mena region,” NPCC said in its statement.

Chinese state-owned contractors CPECC and CNEEC, along with China Offshore Oil Engineering Company (COOEC) and China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Company (CPPEC), have been trying to make inroads into Abu Dhabi’s oil and gas market for years, and have been bidding for major Adnoc onshore, offshore and pipeline EPC contracts.

COOEC is a long-term agreement (LTA) contractor in Saudi Aramco’s pool of offshore service providers.

NPCC’s MoUs with CPECC and CNEEC come at a time when contractors are making collaborative consortium bids for Adnoc’s strategic EPC projects, which are worth billions of dollars and are becoming bigger in value and more complex in nature.

NPCC’s CEO Ahmed al-Dhaheri told MEED in a recent interview that the majority government-owned contractor is making various efforts to entrench itself as a partner of choice in Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia.

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