The long-awaited 30-year integrated liquefied natural gas (LNG) project at Gassi Touil is taking shape, with a consortium of Japan’s JGC Corporation and Kellogg Brown & Root (KBR) of the US carrying out the main contract on the $2,100 million scheme.

The 54-month construction contract calls for the construction of a 4 million-tonne-a-year LNG train at Arzew, near the Djedid export terminal, with the option for a second train of similar capacity at a later date. It also involves: the drilling of 52 development wells, management of 16 existing wells and the construction of surface installations to process 777 million cubic feet a day (cf/d) of raw gas; and the construction of infrastructure to transport 630 million cf/d of processed gas.

Feedstock will come from existing reserves at Gassi Touil, Rhourde Nouss and Hamra. An extensive programme of 3D seismic surveys is being
carried out on the three areas, the
largest ever to be carried out in the country.

Work is also under way for the detailed design and engineering of upstream production facilities by KBR’s Houston office. Conceptual engineering for the LNG export terminal and marine facilities was carried out in 2005. The commercialisation of the LNG will be carried out by a joint venture of state energy company Sonatrach with Repsol and Gas Natural, both of Spain.

Sonatrach in March signed a joint venture agreement with the two companies, creating a new project company, Sociedad de Licuefaccion (SDL), to build and operate the LNG plant. The formation of SDL saw Sonatrach Raffinage et Chimie, a Sonatrach subsidiary, take a 20 per cent share in the project. Repsol’s existing 60 per cent share was reduced to 48 per cent, with Gas Natural’s 40 per cent stake falling to 32 per cent.