Saudi Aramco plans to release an open tender for the second phase of its offshore Safaniya field upgrade in early 2013.

The tender will be the next step in the field’s master development plan aimed at maintaining the current oil production of 1.2 million barrels-a-day (b/d).

“This will be a major offshore contract and will be worth about $500m to the successful contractor,” says an oil industry source based in Saudi Arabia. “The production infrastructure of the field needs to be overhauled.”

A contracting source who asked not to be named said that his company had not yet heard from Aramco regarding the scheme, but was expecting solicitations of interest to be sent out shortly.  

The bidders are likely to include:

  • Hyundai Heavy Industries (South Korea)
  • Leighton Offshore (Australia)
  • McDermott (US)
  • National Petroleum Construction Company (UAE)
  • Saipem (Italy)

The scope will be similar to the first phase and will involve the rehabilitation of the field’s crude-gathering facilities. This will include extensive refurbishment of jackets and offshore platforms as well as providing continued electrification from onshore power sources.

Safaniya is the largest offshore oil field in the world and has been producing Arabian heavy crude since 1957. The first phase was awarded to McDermott and is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2013.