Bidding heats up on Olefins II

23 September 2005
Bidding is accelerating on the remaining downstream process packages on the estimated $2,000 million Olefins II petrochemical complex at Shuaiba. Bid evaluation is under way on the styrene monomer and ethylene oxide/ethylene glycol (EO/EG) packages, while contractors are preparing to submit bids for a third package, covering the polyethylene expansion. Progress is also being made on the offsites and utilities works.

Prequalified companies and groups, including South Korea's Daelim Industrial Company, US-based ShawInternational, and a US/South Korean joint venture of Foster Wheeler and Hyundai Engineering & Construction Company, submitted technical and commercial offers in late August and early September respectively for the 450,000-tonne-a-year (t/y) styrene monomer unit. The client, The Kuwait Styrene Company (TKSC), is expected to award the estimated $200 million-250 million engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract by mid-October. The US' Dow Chemical Company, the international partner on the complex, is licensing its proprietary technology for the unit.

EPC bid evaluation is also ongoing at the Dutch offices of the US' Fluor Corporation- the overall project management consultant (PMC) on the Olefins II project - for the estimated $300 million-400 million contract to build the 600,000-t/y EO/EG unit. Just two prequalified companies and groups - the Foster Wheeler/Hyundai joint venture and Spain's TecnicasReunidas- are understood to have submitted bids in early August. An award is also expected by the end of October (MEED 12:8:05).

For the final main process unit package, to revamp and expand the existing polyethylene (PE) unit by 300,000 t/y, several international contractors including Italy's Snamprogetti, and Kellogg Brown & Rootand Bechtel, both of the US, are understood to have been invited to bid by late autumn. The project company for both the EO/EG and PE packages as well as for the 850,000-t/y ethane cracker - awarded in June to Paris-based Technip- is The Kuwait Olefins Company (TKOC - MEED 1:7:05).

The tendering process has kicked off on the various site infrastructure and non-process unit packages. Fluor, in its role as EPC management (EPCM) contractor for the offsites and utilities programme, has approached local contractors for various subcontracts covering the construction of tank farms, pipeline, road and interface work.

The development of the Olefins II complex is being overseen by EquatePetrochemical Company, a joint venture of the local Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC) and Dow. An associated, but separate, aromatics project is being developed by Kuwait Aromatics Company (Karo) on the same site. Repricing is under way among the three bidders for the aromatics plant contract in an effort to reduce the original offers, which came in considerably above budget when they were submitted in the spring. The UK office of Bechtel is the front-end engineering and design (FEED) and PMC contractor (MEED 22:4:05).

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