The first accord is a 25-year development and production-sharing agreement (DPSA), covering the upstream facilities at the offshore North field in Qatar and the transportation of wet gas to a processing plant at Ras Laffan. This will strip out the condensate, ethane, sulphur and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). The DPSA also covers the transportation of up to 2,000 million cubic feet a day of methane-rich, sweet gas through a 440-kilometre subsea pipeline to Taweelah in Abu Dhabi and Jebel Ali in Dubai.

The second agreement covers the construction of the pipelines that will transport Qatari gas to the UAE and sets out the terms and conditions for the supply of gas to the pipeline network.

The next step in the project will be appointment of a financial adviser. DEL is expected to confirm by mid January the selection of Credit Suisse First Bostonfor the position.

US-based Foster Wheeler, with France’s Sofresid, has been awarded the front-end engineering and design (FEED) contract for the upstream element of the project.