The contract will be awarded by the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor, the US’ Bechtel, which has already placed a number of long-lead item packages. The total value of the EPC package is estimated at about $900 million and the marine works is expected to make up about 15 per cent of the total. Bechtel chief executive Riley Bechtel was recently in Cairo to initial the EPC contract: formal signing is expected over the coming weeks.

The EPC contract covers one train of 3.6 million tonnes a year. However, plans are in hand for a second train to be built at the site over the coming 12 months.

The marine facilities package includes construction of a breakwater, a 2.5-kilometre-long jetty, a temporary dock and some electrical and mechanical works. The contract will also entail a significant amount of dredging.

The project is being carried out by Egyptian LNG (ELNG), whose principal partners are BG Groupof the UK and Edison Internationalof Italy. The other shareholders are Gaz de France, the offtaker for train 1, Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Companyand Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation. The preliminary information memorandum for the train 1 financing was due to go out to banks in mid September (see Banking & Finance).