Saudi Aramco signs Qatif contracts

08 March 2002

Five lump sum turnkey contracts, totalling an estimated $1,200 million, were signed on 3 March for the Qatif incremental oil and associated gas project. The signings came two weeks after Saudi Aramcoselected contractors for the packages. Due to be completed in 2005, the project will add an estimated 800,000 barrels a day (b/d) of oil capacity, increase existing gas-handling capacity at Berri and expand the pipeline network in the Eastern Province (MEED 22:2:02).

Italy's Snamprogettiwas awarded the largest package on Qatif. Worth an estimated $630 million, the contract involves the construction of the 500,000-b/d Qatif-1 gas/oil separation plant (GOSP) and the 300,000-b/d Abu Safah GOSP, Snamprogetti said. In addition, the contractor will supply and install gas treatment and stabilisation units and power units under the 31-month contract.

Paris-based Technip-Coflexipsigned the second-largest package, valued at about $360 million. Covering the expansion of the Berri gas plant to accommodate sour gas from Qatif, Technip will supply and install a range of new units, including a low-pressure gas-sweetening unit, two new sulphur recovery units and a new feed gas compressor. In addition, it will revamp and expand the existing propane refrigeration unit, upgrade inlet and flare facilities, expand utilities and build additional sulphur storage capacity.

On completion in November 2005, Berri's low-pressure gas-sweetening unit capacity will increase by 250 million cubic feet a day (cf/d) to 871 million cf/d and its sulphur recovery capacity by 2,000 tonnes a day (t/d) to 3,300 t/d.

CBI Arabia, part of the US' Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (CBI), was awarded the second GOSP package, which involves the construction of a 200,000-b/d GOSP at Qatif South, a gas-gathering and compression plant, a water injection plant and associated facilities. The estimated $105 million contract is due to be completed by late September 2004. Oil from the GOSP will be further processed at a dehydrogenation unit within the larger of Snamprogetti's GOSPs.

Suedrohrbauof the Netherlands signed the estimated $53 million pipeline package.

The fifth and final package went to the local Contracting & Construction Enterprises (CCE). The $36 million contract covers the construction of support facilities (see Construction).

The Qatif development will produce 500,000 b/d of Arabian light crude from Qatif and 300,000 b/d of Arabian medium crude from Abu Safah. In addition, some 330 million cf/d of associated gas will be produced at Qatif and 40 million cf/d at Abu Safah.

The UK office of US-based Foster Wheeler Corporationis acting as project management consultant on the Qatif development.

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