Qatar Petroleum (QP) has extended the commercial bid deadline for a $1bn project to upgrade gas facilities at Dukhan and Mesaieed.

The state-run energy firm notified the five prequalified contracting groups that the new bid deadline is 8 November. QP had previously asked for bids on 18 October.

A Doha-based contractor who expects to file a bid for the contract to build the facilities says QP required more time to finalise the front-end engineering and design (Feed) phase of the project.

“There was no request from any of the bidders for more time. This delay came from the QP side,” says the contractor.

Contractors submitted technical bids to build the facilities in January (MEED 3:4:09).

The groups competing for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) award are France’s Technip; the UK’s Petrofac; Italy’s Saipem; Athens-based Consolidated Contractors Company with the US’ Black & Veatch; and India’s Larsen & Toubro with Argentina’s Tecna.

The winning group will build facilities at Mesaieed including a new acid gas removal unit and an amine-sweetening plant. The winner will also upgrade an existing sulphur recovery unit, supply and install compressors, and a flared-gas system.

The plant will have capacity to process about 750 million cubic feet a day (cf/d) of gas, which will primarily be used as feedstock for petrochemicals projects.

The second part of the package is for an acid gas removal unit at the onshore Dukhan field.

The unit will have capacity to process about 450 million cf/d of gas from the Khuff reservoir. The Dukhan unit will also have facilities to compress sour gas, dehydrate sweet gas and reinject acid gas. The contractor will build utility systems for the Dukhan unit as well.