Evaluation of bids is under way following the submission of technical and commercial bids in mid-November for a contract to provide project management consultancy (PMC) services on the proposed melamine plant at Ruwais.

At least five companies – WorleyParsons of Australia, Canada’s SNC Lavalinand Foster Wheeler, Fluor Corporationand Jacobs Engineering, all of the US – bid for the melamine plant contract, which is due to be awarded by year-end. Estimated to cost $160 million, the proposed plant will have capacity of 80,000 tonnes a year (t/y). Milan-based Eurotecnica is due to complete the front-end engineering and design (FEED) package by December (MEED 14:10:05).

The project is being handled by a new joint venture company, which is 60 per cent owned by Ruwais Fertiliser Industries (Fertil), with the remaining 40 per cent shares being held by Austria’s AMI Agrolinz Melamine International. The plant will be built beside the existing Fertil complex, which will supply urea feedstock to the new unit.

A tender is due to be issued by early 2006 for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract. The successful project manager will oversee the construction works, which will take about two years to complete.

Investments in Abu Dhabi’s petrochemical sector are being ramped up through the construction of grassroots facilities and expansion of existing units.

The most advanced is the $2,500 million expansion of Abu Dhabi Polymers Company (Borouge) facilities at Ruwais. ‘We are hoping to go out to bid with the ethane cracker package in the coming few weeks,’ Harri Bucht, chief executive officer of Borouge, said on 20 November at the Second MEED Major New Project Opportunities in Abu Dhabi conference.

Estimated to be worth $900 million-1,100 million, it will involve the construction of a 1.4 million-t/y facility.

The Borouge expansion, which will also involve the construction of a 540,000-t/y polyethylene (PE) unit and two 400,000-t/y polypropylene (PP) units, will be carried out in several construction packages. On completion in 2009, it will triple Borouge’s capacity to 2 million t/y. Both units will use the Borstartechnology (MEED 28:10:05).