Engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractors bidding for the sulphur granulation and handling facilities tender have extended the bid bond by two weeks as Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) has stalled on the contract award.

Athens-based Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) remains the frontrunner for the project, with their bid valued between $500m-550m.

“CCC is a strong contractor in the Middle East. Without any big accident or incident, they will get the project,” says a source at a rival bidder.

The deal was initially to be concluded at the end of March (MEED 25:03:11). Despite the delay, the letter of award is due to be sent out imminently.

“We are waiting for the award to be issued any time” said a source close to the project.

Another source put the delay down to “internal, administrative matters” at Adnoc.

The contract covers the construction of sulphur granulation facilities with a capacity of about 7 million tonnes a year (t/y) at the Shah field, located 190 kilometres south of Abu Dhabi city. The project also includes liquid sulphur storage tanks and solid sulphur granule storage facilities, conveying systems and a marine terminal.

The project is part of the Shah gas field development, which will increase Adnoc’s gas production by 1 billion cubic feet a day (cf/d), as the national oil company is seeking to boost its total production to 6 billion cf/d from its current 4.5 billion cf/d.