Qatar Petroleum (QP)and Qatar Shell GTL, a joint venture between QP and the Royal Dutch/Shell Group, have signed a development and production sharing agreement (DPSA) on the $5,000 million integrated gas-to-liquids (GTL) project at Ras Laffan. The agreement sets out the fiscal and legal terms for the project, which has been named Pearl GTL, and follows the signing of a heads of agreement (HoA) in October 2003 (MEED 24:10:03).
The project calls for the construction of two 70,000-barrel-a-day GTL trains, with the first due on stream in 2009 and the second scheduled for completion two years later. Japan's JGC Corporation was awarded the front-end engineering and design (FEED) contract on the development in March and the work is due to take 14-15 months to complete (MEED 12:3:04). The Qatar Shell GTL agreement also calls for the construction of two wellhead platforms in the North field to determine reservoir properties and structure and to validate the composition of the gas in the area allocated to the project. The first appraisal well was spudded in mid-February (MEED 20:2:04). The Qatar Shell GTL project is one of several such schemes making progress, the latest being a $7,000 million venture by QP and ExxonMobil Corporation(see above).