Two in for Persian LNG

21 October 2005
Two consortia are preparing to bid for the front-end engineering and design (FEED) contract for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, known as Persian LNG, being sponsored by National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC)in partnership with the Royal Dutch/Shell Groupand Spain's Repsol. Germany's Lindeis close to signing the contract to revise the FEED for a rival project, known as NIOC LNG (MEED 15:7:05).

The Persian LNG FEED contract, for which bids are due by the end of the year, will be for the liquefaction and export facilities only. Another FEED contract for the offshore South Pars phase 13, which will supply gas feedstock for the project, was launched in the spring but has suffered delays.

The prospective bidders for the FEED work are: a consortium of Italy's Snamprogettiwith Germany's Linde, Europe's ABB Lummus Global, Spain's Tecnicas Reunidasand the local Sazeh Consult; and Japan's Chiyoda Corporationwith an unidentified local partner. NIOC subsidiary National Iranian Gas Export Company (NIGEC)is handling all LNG matters.

The Persian LNG project will involve the installation of two LNG trains, each with a capacity to produce about 5 million tonnes a year. The project promoters have not yet decided whether to develop both trains simultaneously or one after the other. South Pars phase 13 is also to be developed by Shell and Repsol on a buyback basis.

Linde is close to agreeing to revise the FEED for the NIOC LNG project after the withdrawal of original turbine supplier GE Francefrom Iran. Linde's new proposal - based on its own LNG technology - will be based on using electric motors rather than gas turbines. Snamprogetti is also negotiating with NIOC to provide a separate revised FEED for the same project based on France's Axens'technology. The project is running behind schedule (MEED 8:4:05).

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