Firms to bid for work at Saudi offshore gas fields

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KHOBAR: State oil firm Saudi Aramco has invited contractors to bid for offshore work at its non-associated gas fields feeding Wasit, the biggest gas plant built in the kingdom, industry sources said on Sunday.

Wasit would process up to 2.5 billion cubic feet per day (cfd) of gas from the Arabiyah and Hasbah offshore fields.

The deadline for bids is Nov. 7, a source told Reuters adding work would involve building pipelines and platforms at Arabiyah and Hasbah.

Aramco invited contractors to bid for the onshore packages last month.
After completing a crude oil capacity expansion plan last year, the world’s top oil exporter has focused on developing gas production to meet rapidly rising domestic demand.

Aramco has given no cost estimate for the Wasit plant, but industry sources said it would cost between $6 billion and $8 billion.

Most of the kingdom’s gas output is associated with oil, so when Saudi Arabia curbs crude output in line with OPEC production curbs, it limits gas supplies too.

Last year, Aramco’s non-associated gas output exceeded for the first time associated gas output, its 2009 annual review said.

Wasit, along with the Khursaniyah and Karan gas plants, would help Saudi Arabia to reach its target of increasing raw gas production to 15.5 billion cfd by 2015 from 10.2 billion cfd now.


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