UAE-based Petrofac has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with independent clean energy champion, Storegga Geotechnologies.
The MoU builds new energy capability and capacity in the UK and represents a significant strategic step in Petrofac’s continued expansion into new and renewable energy.
The agreement supports Petrofac and Storegga to collaborate on potential business development and project initiatives in Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), Hydrogen and other low carbon projects. With an initial focus on the UKCS and North West Europe, the MoU also includes scope for the parties to work together internationally.
Commenting, Petrofac Engineering & Production Services’ Chief Operating Officer, and global Corporate Development Officer, John Pearson, said: “We are delighted to develop this strategic partnership with Storegga, who have a bold ambition to establish themselves as an operator of low carbon technology projects.
“Like our existing offshore wind portfolio, CCS, Hydrogen and other low carbon technologies require the complex engineering, project management and asset management capability we have developed in oil and gas. We very much look forward to having the opportunity to leverage our experience – from concept to commissioning – to work with Storegga to bring viable projects through to fruition and help drive the UK’s Energy Transition.”
Nick Cooper, chief executive of Storegga Geotechnologies, said: “There is great value in Storegga working with companies such as Petrofac to bolster our engineering and project management capability. This will enable Storegga to accelerate the delivery of our CCS and hydrogen projects in support of the energy transition. We very much look forward to collaborating on future opportunities.”
London-listed Gulf Marine Services (GMS) said it has seen significant improvement in performance despite the difficulties brought by COVID-19.
GMS said that adjusted EBITDA increased by 34 per cent to US$31.4 million compared to $23.4 million in the first half of 2019. GMS said that this reflects the benefit of cost savings and improved utilisation, despite the impact of COVID-19 on the market environment and operations.
In a statement, GMS said that progress continues on the programme to reduce costs. The 2019/20 cost saving programme has secured $16.5 million in savings, on an annualised basis, significantly exceeding the original target of $6 million set in March 2019. The company added that as a result of the Framework Agreement with Zakher Marine International announced on 29 May 2020, further savings are expected to be delivered going forward.
Revenue was reduced by 9 per cent to $49.8 million compared to $55 million in the same period last year. Reflecting lower day rates for all vessel classes, partially offset by an improvement in utilisation.
GMS highlighted that the average fleet utilisation for H1 2020 had increased to 78 per cent, a 9 percentage point increase, despite the impact of COVID-19 on tender activity and operations.
Tim Summers, executive chairman, GMS said: "GMS has delivered a significant improvement in performance despite the difficulties brought by COVID-19, and the resultant oil price collapse. Vessel utilisation has been restored to 2016 levels, while adjusted EBITDA is up 34 per cent on H1 2019. We have continued to secure new contracts throughout the pandemic, increasing the order book and profitability is up substantially compared to the previous year."
He added: "In fewer than twelve months, a new management team has fundamentally repositioned GMS for success. With 83 per cent fleet utilisation already secured for 2020, and a lean cost base, we are already demonstrating the business's ability to drive profitable growth."
ADNOC Logistics & Services (ADNOC L&S), the shipping and maritime logistics subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), announced the formation of a new strategic joint venture (JV) with Wanhua Chemical Group (Wanhua).
The new company named AW Shipping Limited is incorporated in Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) in the UAE.
AW Shipping Limited (AW Shipping) will own and operate a fleet of very large gas carriers (VLGCs) and modern product tankers. The company will be responsible for transporting LPG cargoes and other petroleum products, sourced from the ADNOC Group and global suppliers, to Wanhua Group’s manufacturing bases in China and around the world. To deliver maximum fleet efficiency, the company may also pursue other market opportunities.
H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and ADNOC Group CEO, said: "We are very pleased to establish this strategic joint venture with Wanhua Chemical Group. This creative win-win partnership strengthens our growing relationship and will deliver greater value and efficiency for both our organizations. Importantly, the JV further solidifies ADNOC L&S’ position as the largest, fully integrated logistics and shipping company in the UAE and paves the way for the transportation of greater LPG volumes to China, in line with market demand.
“The establishment of AW Shipping supports ADNOC’s smart growth and value creation strategy and is another example of how ADNOC is stretching the margin from every molecule that we produce, refine, ship and sell, while also forging stronger partnerships in key growth markets.”
The formation of AW Shipping follows a 10-year liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) supply contract signed between ADNOC and Wanhua in November 2018.
Liao Zengtai, Chairman of Wanhua Chemical Group, said: “We are very glad that joint venture has been established with the concerted efforts of both parties. The new company will strengthen the strategic cooperation between ADNOC and Wanhua and will also ensure the stable supply of LPG cargoes and other petroleum products for Wanhua system. More importantly, the cooperation will make contribution to the “One Belt, One Road” project.”
ADNOC L&S was formed in late 2016 from three ADNOC subsidiaries, ADNATCO, IRSHAD, and ESNAAD. The integration created synergies between shipping, marine services, offshore logistics, and onshore logistics to create the largest integrated shipping and maritime logistics company in the GCC.
Last year, ADNOC L&S transported over 20 million metric tonnes of various oil & gas products and dry bulk commodities.
Norway's DNO has stepped up investments across its portfolio on the back of higher production and significantly improved liquidity outlook as the Company recovers from the oil market turmoil that upended the second quarter of 2020.
Operated production in July at the Company’s flagship Tawke license in the Kurdistan region of Iraq is up 15,000 barrels of oil per day (bopd) month-on-month to 115,000 bopd following a well intervention campaign fast tracked in June with the stabilisation of oil prices and improved export payment terms. In the North Sea segment, DNO projects receipt of USD 215 million in tax refunds in the second half of the year, including US$70 million from the recently announced temporary changes to petroleum taxation in Norway.
“The worst of the coronavirus pandemic hit to our business is behind us and DNO is back identifying and capturing opportunities,” said Bijan Mossavar-Rahmani, DNO’s executive chairman. “Still, we are prepared to act quickly, as we did in March, if a strong second wave comes,” he added.
Second quarter Company Working Interest (CWI) production stood at 89,700 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) of which Kurdistan contributed 71,900 bopd and the North Sea 17,800 boepd.
Gross operated Tawke license production averaged 102,000 bopd, including 58,100 bopd from the Tawke field and 43,900 bopd from the Peshkabir field, together down 11 percent from the first quarter as development activity dropped off to preserve cash at a time of historically low and uncertain oil prices.
Second quarter revenues slid to US$72 million and operating losses climbed to US$81 million, both driven by weak commodity prices across the portfolio and lower cargo liftings of produced oil in the North Sea.
At the Baeshiqa license in Kurdistan, DNO continued drilling the third exploration well on a second structure (Zartik) some 15 kilometers southeast of the Baeshiqa-2 discovery well. The rig has been released and testing will commence in August in Lower Jurassic and Upper Triassic zones intersected by the well and expected to last three months. Evaluation of the Baeshiqa-2 results is ongoing to determine commerciality.
Last month, DNO said it commissioned the Peshkabir-to-Tawke gas reinjection project, the first enhanced oil recovery project in Kurdistan, to unlock additional oil volumes at Tawke while significantly reducing gas flaring and CO2 discharges at Peshkabir.
Austria’s OMV and Algeria’s Sonatrach have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to identify potential upstream opportunities where the two parties can jointly invest in exploration or development and production projects in Algeria.
The MoU shows the interest of both parties to investigate collaboration options following the passing of a new Algerian Hydrocarbon Law.
Sonatrach is the national state-owned oil company of Algeria. Austria's OMV has daily upstream production of 487 kboe/d in 2019 in its five core regions of Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the North Sea, Russia, and Asia-Pacific.
The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) announced that its operating and maintenance subsidiary, Nawah Energy Company (Nawah) has successfully started up Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, located in the Al Dhafrah Region of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE).
This step is the most historic milestone to date in the delivery of the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme, as part of the process towards generating clean electricity for the Nation for at least the next 60 years.
Since receipt of the Operating License from the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulations (FANR) in February 2020, and the completion of fuel assembly loading in March 2020, Nawah, the Joint Venture nuclear operations and maintenance subsidiary of ENEC and the Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO), has been safely progressing through a comprehensive testing program, prior to successfully completing the start-up of the first nuclear energy reactor of the Barakah plant.
The start-up of Unit 1 marks the first time that the reactor safely produces heat, which is used to create steam, turning a turbine to generate electricity. Nawah’s qualified and licensed team of nuclear operators focus on safely controlling the process and controlling the power output of the reactor. After several weeks and conducting numerous safety tests, Unit 1 will be ready to connect to the UAE’s electricity grid, delivering the first megawatts of clean electricity to the homes and businesses of the Nation. Testing has been undertaken with the continued oversight of the UAE’s independent nuclear regulator, FANR, and follows the World Association of Nuclear Operator’s (WANO) completion of a Pre Start-up Review (PSUR) in January 2020, prior to receipt of the Operating License, which ensures Unit 1 is aligned with international best practice in the nuclear energy industry.
H.E. Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi, chief executive officer of ENEC, said: “Today is a truly historic moment for the UAE. It is the culmination of more than a decade of vision, strategic planning and robust program management. Despite the recent global challenges, our team has demonstrated outstanding resilience and commitment to the safe delivery of Unit 1. We are now another step closer to achieving our goal of supplying up to a quarter of our Nation’s electricity needs and powering its future growth with safe, reliable, and emissions-free electricity.
“Through the realisation of the vision of our Leadership, the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant has become an engine of growth for the Nation. It will deliver 25 per cent of the UAE’s electricity with zero carbon emissions while also supporting economic diversification by creating thousands of high-value jobs through the establishment of a sustainable local nuclear energy industry and supply chain. We are grateful to the Leadership for their continuous support in making this remarkable achievement happen, along with the support of our UAE stakeholders and Korean partners, and congratulate everyone involved in the Program on this landmark occasion.”
Once the unit is connected to the grid, the nuclear operators will continue with a process of gradually raising the power levels, known as Power Ascension Testing (PAT). Throughout, the systems of Unit 1 are continuously monitored and tested as the unit proceeds towards full electricity production in line with all regulatory requirements and the highest international standards of safety, quality and security. Once the process is completed over the course of a number of months, the plant will deliver abundant baseload electricity at full capacity to power the growth and prosperity of the UAE for decades to come.
Commenting on this key milestone in UAE nuclear energy operations, Eng. Ali Al Hammadi, chief executive officer of Nawah, said: “The start-up of Unit 1 is a significant milestone for Nawah Energy Company as we fulfill our mandate to operate and maintain the plant in accordance with the highest international standards of safety and quality. The dedication of our people as well as our close collaboration with our Korean partners and cooperation with numerous international expert organisations has enabled this accomplishment. This reflects our commitment to upholding the highest safety, quality and operational transparency standards throughout the entire commissioning and startup process by leveraging the expertise of the global nuclear industry.
Siemens Energy was selected to provide centrifugal compressor systems for Saudi Aramco’s Hawiyah Unayzah Gas Reservoir Storage (HUGRS) project.
The plant includes a gas injection facility with a capacity of 1,500 million standard cubic feet per day (MMSCFD) and a withdrawal facility capable of processing up to 2,000 MMSCFD of gas.
Siemens Energy received the order from Samsung Engineering, who was awarded the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contract for the entire project earlier this year.
The project, located 260 kilometers east of Saudi Arabia’s capital, Riyadh, includes a plant that will take surplus pipelines gas in the winter months and inject it into an existing depleted field. From here, it can be withdrawn when needed to meet high summer demand.
Siemens Energy will supply the required 20 compression trains. Ten trains will be built for the injection portion of the plant, and another 10 trains will be used for the withdrawal portion of the plant.
“We have a track record of fastest delivery times and a dedicated local workforce to produce these units in our Dammam facility in line with our commitment to Aramco’s In-Kingdom Total Value Add program,” said Arja Talakar, senior vice president, Industrial Applications Products for Siemens Energy.
This order builds on Siemens’ recent successful supply of compressor trains for other Saudi Aramco projects, including the new Fadhill gas plant and the Hawiyah gas expansion project.
“Siemens Energy is honored to receive this order, which we believe is due to our proven ability to deliver better compressor performance and flawless execution, which ultimately results in lower life cycle costs,” added Patrice Laporte, Head of North America Industrial Applications Products.
The 400-megawatt (MW) Dumat Al Jandal utility-scale wind farm in Saudi Arabia that is being developed by a consortium led by EDF Renewables in partnership with Masdar has marked a key construction milestone with the arrival of 20 wind turbines at Duba Port.
The turbines comprising towers, blades and nacelles will be assembled at the Dumat Al Jandal site, located 900km north of Riyadh, in the Al Jouf region of Saudi Arabia. A total of 99 Vestas V150-4.2MW wind turbines will be installed, with a hub height of 130 meters and rotor diameter of 150 meters.
Vestas is also responsible for the project’s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract, while TSK is handling the balance of plant (BOP) and Al Babtain Contracting Company is providing the project’s substations and high-voltage solutions.
Dumat Al Jandal will be Saudi Arabia’s first wind farm and the largest in the Middle East when completed. Construction began last August and commercial operations are due to start in the first quarter of 2022.
Once fully operational, the wind farm will power up to 70,000 Saudi households, while displacing around 988,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.
The Renewable Energy Project Development Office (REPDO) of Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Energy awarded the US$500 million Dumat Al Jandal wind farm to the EDF Renewables-Masdar consortium in January 2019 following a competitive tender in which it had submitted the lowest bid of US$21.3 per megawatt hour (MWh). The tariff was further improved to US$19.9/MWh at financial close, making Dumat Al Jandal the most cost-efficient wind project anywhere in the world.
The Dumat Al Jandal wind farm will supply electricity according to a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) to the Saudi Power Procurement Company, a subsidiary of the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), the Saudi power generation and distribution company.
Osama bin Abdulwahab Khawandanah, Chief Executive Officer of Saudi Power Procurement Company, which is responsible for purchasing the entire production of the Dumat Al Jandal project, said: “We are pleased with the arrival of 20 wind turbines for the Dumat Al Jandal wind energy project, and we thank the winning consortium for all the efforts they are making in the construction of the plant to achieve its commercial operation on time.”
Khawandanah added: "Dumat Al Jandal is our first wind energy project producing electricity at scale and as a key project under the King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative, it is playing a key role in diversifying Saudi Arabia's power mix sustainably. Dumat Al Jandal reflects our strong partnership with the private sector and the commercial viability of wind energy, which is enabling us to establish a competitive renewable energy sector in the Kingdom while reducing our carbon emissions in line with the Vision 2030."
Frédéric Belloy, EDF Renewables’ International Executive Vice President, declared: “We are very pleased to be part of this important step forward in the Saudi Arabia energy transition with the delivery of the first wind turbines dedicated to a utility-scale wind farm in the Kingdom. This key construction milestone, in the largest wind farm of Middle East, highlights the progress achieved in the delivery phase of the project by the consortium and its suppliers.”
Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar, added: “The delivery of the first batch of wind turbines is a significant landmark in the development of the Dumat Al Jandal wind farm and the realisation of Saudi Arabia’s wider renewable energy program, to which we are fully committed with our partners.”
Muhamed Bou-Zeid, General Manager of Vestas Middle East and North Africa, said: “Saudi Arabia is ready to make that transition and to become a beacon of green energy and sustainability for the rest of its neighbouring countries to follow suit. We are very pleased to be part of the Kingdom’s vision and success and we look forward to establishing ourselves in the country for many years to come.”
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) announced its agreement to the transfer of rights in its Lower Zakum and Umm Shaif and Nasr offshore concessions from the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) to China National Offshore Oil Corporation’s subsidiary CNOOC Limited (CNOOC).
The transfer has been approved by Abu Dhabi’s Supreme Petroleum Council (SPC) and marks the first time that a dedicated Chinese offshore oil and gas company joins ADNOC’s concessions.
The transfer of concession rights to another key Chinese company reinforces the strong and strategic bilateral ties between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and China.
The transfer comprises of CNOOC acquiring (through its holding company, CNOOC Hong Kong Holding Limited (CNOOC HK)), a 40 per cent interest in CNPC’s majority-owned subsidiary PetroChina Investment Overseas (Middle East) Ltd (PetroChina).
His Excellency Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and ADNOC Group CEO, said: “The transfer of part of CNPC’s share in two of ADNOC’s major offshore concessions to CNOOC reflects the long-standing strategic and economic bilateral relations between the UAE and China, and highlights the continued pull of the UAE as a leading global energy and investment destination, backed by a stable and reliable business environment. The transfer also illustrates ADNOC’s strengthened access to international markets and partners and our commitment to generating sustainable returns for the UAE.
“CNOOC joins our other international partners in the Lower Zakum and Umm Shaif and Nasr concessions and bring world-class expertise and technology to help us continue to maximize value from the concessions as we create a more profitable upstream business and deliver our 2030 strategy.”
PetroChina holds a 10 per cent interest in the Lower Zakum concession and a 10 percent interest in the Umm Shaif and Nasr concession. As a result of the transfer, CNOOC will hold a 4 percent interest in the Lower Zakum concession and a 4 percent interest in the Umm Shaif and Nasr concession, while PetroChina will retain a 6 percent stake in the concessions.
Dai Houliang, Chairman of CNPC, said: “CNPC has had successful cooperation with ADNOC, and we believe that the cooperation with CNOOC will bring more value to ADNOC and the partners of the concession. We will leverage the strengths of the two Chinese companies, which will help reinforce the development of these two concessions.”
Wang Dongjin, Chairman of CNOOC, said: “We are very pleased to participate in the Lower Zakum and Umm Shaif and Nasr concessions. This further strengthens the strategic relationship with ADNOC and PetroChina. CNOOC will leverage our extensive expertise in the offshore sector and be dedicated to value creation in these concessions for our mutual benefit.”
CNOOC joins an ONGC Videsh-led consortium (10 percent), INPEX Corporation (10 per cent), CNPC (6 per cent), Eni (5 per cent), and Total (5 per cent) as participants in the Lower Zakum concession; and Eni (10 per cent), Total (20 per cent), and CNPC (6 per cent) as participants in the Umm Shaif and Nasr concession. ADNOC retains a 60 percent majority ownership interest in both concessions.
Total, BP and Eni (as the operator) have made a gas discovery with the Bashrush well on the North El Hammad license, located eleven kilometers off the Egyptian coast.
The well has been opened to test potentiality of production, and it delivered up to 32 MMscfd of gas. The test rate was limited by surface testing facilities. The well deliverability in production configuration is estimated at up to 100 MMscf of gas and 800 barrels of condensate per day.
“We are very pleased to announce this discovery in Egypt. These results support our strategy to allocate a significant share of our exploration budget to the search of hydrocarbons in the vicinity of existing infrastructures,” said Kevin McLachlan, senior vice president Exploration at Total. “These resources have low development costs since they can rapidly be tie-in and put into production.”
Eni, together with its partners BP and Total and in coordination with Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company, will continue screening the development options of Bashrush, with the aim of fast tracking production through synergies with the area's existing infrastructures.
In the North El Hammad concession, which is in participation with the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS), Eni through its affiliate IEOC holds 37.5 per cent interest and the role of Operator, BP holds the 37.5 per cent, and Total holds the 25 per cent of the contractor share.
Total has completed the installation of a solar-powered rooftop at its Dubai Lubricants Blending Unit.
The project has been managed by Total Solar Distributed Generation Middle East, its affiliate dedicated to the development of distributed solar energy solutions in the region.
The 500 kilowatt-peak solar-powered rooftop installed at the blending unit covers an area of over 2,500m2, equivalent to 13 tennis courts. The solar power generated by the rooftop will be able to cover nearly 35 per cent of the facility’s energy needs. As a result, the solar-powered rooftop will offset CO2 emissions by estimated 7,000 tons over the expected life-span of the installation. An extension of the project is currently under consideration, with a target to cover approximately 70 per cent of the facility’s energy needs.
“Total shares the ambition, together with society, to become carbon neutral by 2050, for all of its activities, from its production to the use of the energy products sold to its customers,” highlighted Karine Singh, managing director for Total Marketing Middle East. “As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of our blending plant, we are delighted with the completion of this solar rooftop, an illustration of our commitment to reduce the carbon footprint of our own operations here in Dubai.”
“In line with Total’s climate ambition, Total Solar Distributed Generation Middle East works towards developing renewable energy solutions for commercial and industrial players in the Middle East, including the Group’s own businesses. With this project we are proud to contribute with our solar energy expertise and knowledge to supply our Dubai Lubricants facility with clean, reliable and affordable electricity,” said Marin de Montbel, Managing Director at Total Solar Distributed Generation Middle East.
This project is part of Total’s solarisation project, which includes the installation of solar panels at its offices, blending units and around 5,000 of its service stations in more than 50 countries around the world, contributing to Total’s target of 25 GW of renewable generation installed capacity by 2025.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Government of Iraq hosted a high-level Ministerial roundtable on investment and economic reforms in Iraq, with a particular focus on the country’s electricity and gas sectors.
The virtual meeting brought together senior Iraqi Ministers and policymakers, Ministers from IEA countries, CEOs and leaders of energy companies as well as international financial institutions, who discussed how to ensure that Iraq’s energy sector can continue its recovery at a time of constrained government budgets and tighter financing environments.
Participants from the Government of Iraq included Mr. Ali Allawi, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance; Mr. Ihsan Ismaeel, the Minister of Oil; Mr. Majid Hantoush, the Minister of Electricity; and Ms. Suha Najjar, an advisor to the Prime Minister.
The roundtable also heard from several other top government officials, including Mr. Dan Brouillette, the U.S. Secretary of Energy; Mr Kwasi Kwarteng, Minister of State for Business, Energy and Clean Growth of the United Kingdom; Ambassador Francois Delattre, Secretary-General of France's Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs; as well as senior executives of Siemens Energy, GE Gas Power, Total, Eni, BP, Bechtel and Crescent Petroleum.
The discussions reviewed the role that the new Iraqi government sees for the private sector in developing the country’s electricity and natural gas sectors, as well as measures needed to spur investment by energy companies. The meeting followed a call in May between Iraq’s Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kadhimi, and the IEA’s Executive Director, Dr Fatih Birol, agreeing to work together, particularly in the area of electricity and gas reform.
“Iraq reforming its economy is not a matter for debate. It is essential, and it is vital that reforms are comprehensive and timely,” said Mr. Allawi. “The meeting today with the IEA highlighted the Government of Iraq's seriousness in its endeavour to fundamentally reform its economy, including the energy sector, which we want to be a driver of growth and development.”
“The IEA has been a steadfast supporter of Iraq’s reforms, and we are especially encouraged by the Government’s clear-sighted and comprehensive vision for economic development,” said Dr Birol. “The energy sector will be a crucial linchpin here – stable and affordable electricity can spur the private sector growth that Iraq needs to diversify. Iraq can continue to count on the IEA’s support in this area of the reform, and we want to encourage private investments and international public support to ensure its success.”
The meeting is the latest in a series of top-level engagements that the IEA has undertaken in support of the Government of Iraq in recent years. Last year, the IEA published an in-depth analysis of the country’s energy sector, examining the problems affecting Iraq’s power sector and offering recommendations to address the situation, including the potential role of renewables. The report, Iraq's Energy Sector: A Roadmap to a Brighter Future, also took a detailed look at the country’s oil and gas industry and its prospects for the next decade.
Since then, the drop in oil prices due to the Covid-19 pandemic has severely curtailed the government’s ability to spend on critical infrastructure. As a response to the economic and financial strain, the new government is exploring avenues to fundamentally reform its economy to reduce the burden on state finances, incentivise private sector growth, and make the economy more resilient to future oil price movements.
Weir Oil & Gas Dubai announced it has signed a multi-year multimillion dollar contract in Iraq with a major gas company.
The contract secures the provision of Weir Oil & Gas fabrication, workshop-machining services and field services to support the company’s operations in Iraq, especially with respect to brownfield modifications and rotating equipment maintenance.
Positive past and existing contract performance with the international oil company, Weir Oil & Gas’ capabilities in Iraq, local content, in-house engineering, API and OEM certifications and having a comprehensive international facility near the gas company’s sites were deciding factors in the deal. This contractual agreement further consolidates Weir’s Rig to Grid capabilities in the Middle East.
This is a strategic agreement that will enable Weir to be a key player for the international gas company and allow Weir to expand their portfolio in the specific oil field in which the gas company operates.
“We are pleased to support our clients through providing services, repairs and important upgrades while assisting them with engineer-driven change management protocols and production facility turnarounds,” said Ronan Le Gloahec, Eastern Hemisphere president for Weir Oil & Gas. “With this contract we will support this client’s gas operations for several years to come thanks to our state-of-the-art facility and in-country engineering know-how.”
Tristar Group has begun construction of 10 new storage tanks for its chemical terminal in Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA) taken over from Shell in 2019.
The construction of the storage tanks is part of an agreement signed with Shell and JAFZA in 2018 which will see the storage capacity of the JAFZA chemical terminal increase from 5,505 CBM to 25,000 CBM. Under the terms of the agreement, Shell will remain a customer.
Construction of the new tanks began in April 2020 and will be completed by May 2021, creating jobs and contributing to the UAE’s economic recovery post Covid-19.
Eugene Mayne, Group CEO of Tristar said: “We are pleased to announce the commencement of our expansion and modernization program for the JAFZA chemical terminal. When we acquired the facility in 2019, we invested in the UAE’s vision and its position as a significant logistics hub. The upgraded facility will be a turnkey and fully integrated distribution center that has the ability to handle bulk imports and packed chemical products at high volumes.”
Other upgrades to the JAFZA chemical terminal that will be constructed in due course include a second loading gantry that can accommodate four road tankers simultaneously, a drumming line for flammable liquid, a 100-ton capacity weigh bridge and a two-story office building with a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) control room.
The terminal currently has nine above ground storage tanks, a jetty with three pipeline connections to the tanks, a truck loading gantry and a drumming facility. It is situated on a 25,409 sqm lot facing the sea and is 350m away from the Ship offloading berth.
The Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC), announced it has awarded Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) and Masdar, with partners EDF and JinkoPower, the contract to build a 2 GW solar power plant.
The Al Dhafra Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Independent Power Producer (IPP) project, which will be located 35 kilometers from Abu Dhabi city. The project’s power purchase agreement (PPA) and shareholders’ agreement were signed with EWEC.
The rigorous procurement process resulted in one of the most cost-competitive tariffs for solar PV energy, set at AED 4.97 fils/kWh (USD 1.35 cents/kWh) on a levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) basis. Upon full commercial operation, the plant is expected to reduce Abu Dhabi’s CO2 emissions by more than 2.4 million metric tonnes per year, equivalent to removing approximately 470,000 cars from the road.
Othman Al Ali, chief executive officer of EWEC, said: “We are delighted to work with our partners and sign a PPA with a record-low tariff for solar power. We are working to secure long-term energy supply and reinforce solar power’s integral role in meeting current and future energy needs. Combined with key technological advances, the Al Dhafra Solar PV project will have a significant impact on diversifying the approach to our current electricity supply, and drive our strategic plan to further contribute towards the sector’s transformation in water and electricity production, as we develop a low-carbon grid in the UAE.”
Jasim Husain Thabet, Group CEO and managing director at TAQA, said: “The Al Dhafra Solar PV plant is a benchmark project for our nation and the global energy sector. The project’s low tariff and utilisation of best-in-class technology further demonstrate the feasibility of utility-scale renewable energy projects that are accelerating our nation’s progress on meeting the ambitious energy objectives outlined in the UAE Energy Strategy 2050. Once fully operational, the plant will increase Abu Dhabi’s solar power capacity to approximately 3.2 GW.”
The Al Dhafra Solar PV project is expected to provide approximately 160,000 households across the UAE with electricity. It will be larger than TAQA’s existing 1.2 GW ‘Noor Abu Dhabi’ solar plant, which is currently the world’s largest operational single-project solar PV plant.
Bruno Bensasson, EDF Group Senior Executive Vice-President Renewable Energies and Chief Executive Officer of EDF Renewables, said: “For EDF, the signing of the PPA for Al Dhafra Solar PV is a testimony of the confidence that the government and EWEC have in our industrial abilities. The project will use the latest in crystalline, bifacial solar technology delivering electricity to the highest efficiency and at a world record-low tariff in such irradiation conditions.”
Through this project, 60 per cent will be owned by a consortium comprising TAQA and Masdar, while the remaining 40 per ceny will be owned by EDF and JinkoPower. The project’s financial closure is expected to occur in Q3 2020, enabling initial power generation in H1 2022 and full generation by H2 2022. Once fully operational, the plant will increase Abu Dhabi’s solar power capacity to approximately 3.2 GW.
The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and ADQ signed a joint venture (JV) agreement to create a new investment platform to fund and oversee the development of industrial projects within the planned Ruwais Derivatives Park.
The agreement was signed by H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and ADNOC Group CEO, and H.E. Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, CEO of ADQ.
Under the terms of the agreement, ADNOC and ADQ will jointly evaluate and invest in anchor chemicals projects. ADNOC will hold a 60 per cent majority equity stake in the JV with ADQ holding the remaining 40 per cent. ADQ’s extensive portfolio, including local and international logistics and transport, power and water, industrial construction, and other essential infrastructure and enabling services, will complement ADNOC’s strong hydrocarbon feedstock position in Ruwais as well as its longstanding relationships with trusted international partners and investors. These combined strengths will enhance the overall value proposition of the planned Ruwais Derivatives Park and, in turn, support the long-term growth of the broader Ruwais industrial complex and increased investment in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
The JV partners will conduct a comprehensive feasability study to further develop identified projects in Ruwais and take forward those that show maximum potential for value creation. The JV plans to announce the results of this study before the end of 2020, including specific details on its selected target projects and the range of potential opportunities available for prospective investors and partners.
H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber said: “The range, scale and calibre of resources ADNOC and ADQ each bring to this new chemicals investment platform underscore Abu Dhabi’s position as a leading global destination for international investors and industrial partners. In line with ADNOC’s commitment to smart, responsible investment in the current market environment, as well as our unwavering focus on stretching the margin of every barrel of oil produced, our partnership with ADQ will expand on existing efforts to maximise the value of our assets in Ruwais, to kickstart the development of the UAE’s downstream derivatives sector, support the transformation of Ruwais into a global hub for industry and attract additional foreign direct investment.”
H.E. Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi, CEO of ADQ, said: “By partnering with ADNOC to facilitate the development of the investment platform in Ruwais Derivatives Park, we will play a key role, together with the public and private sectors, in providing essential infrastructure development services. At ADQ, we are driving value creation and helping to build a prosperous economy for the benefit of Abu Dhabi through our diverse portfolio of the emirate’s leading entities such as Abu Dhabi Ports, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA), Etihad Rail, Emirates Steel, DUCAB and Arkan.”
With the required approvals, the JV will be incorporated in Abu Dhabi Global Markets with both companies jointly determining the JV’s management team and board, in line with global corporate governance best practice.
The development of a robust downstream derivatives industry in Ruwais is the cornerstone of ADNOC downstream’s growth strategy, launched at ADNOC’s Downstream Investment Forum in 2018. ADNOC continues to deliver on the expansion of its downstream business as part of its 2030 smart growth strategy, which will see the Ruwais industrial complex transformed into a globally competitive chemicals cluster, leveraging the UAE’s close geographic proximity to global growth markets, access to competitive feedstocks, streamlined utilities and services offer, as well as Abu Dhabi’s attractive fiscal and regulatory environment.
The King Salman Energy Park (SPARK) has completed 60 per cent of its first phase which consists of infrastructure, roads, utilities, and real estate assets established across 14 square kilometres, in addition to a dedicated three-square kilometre logistics zone and dry port.
SPARK is strategically located in the eastern region of the Kingdom between Dammam and Al-Ahsa.
A total of 6 billion Saudi Riyals was invested in the first phase of this mega project, which is set to be completed in 2021. Upon completion, the project will add 22 billion Saudi Riyals annually to the Kingdom’s gross domestic product by 2035, while creating thousands of new highly skilled job opportunities.
Chairman of the King Salman Energy Park, Dr. Mohammed Yahya Al-Qahtani said: “Achieving this feat strongly reflects our commitment to implement this unique project that is designed for the betterment of our community. SPARK will be a new engine fuelling the growth of the energy sector as well as driving the diversification agenda of our economy. As we take huge economic leaps, soon, we will be ready to attract the best talent and create new opportunities for our ambitious youth”.
Fifteen major energy companies have already signed agreements to invest in SPARK, and another fifteen companies are currently in the pipeline. It is forecasted that foreign direct investment in SPARK will exceed US$2 billion in the next two years, once these investors finalise the construction of their facilities.
SPARK has also signed an MoU with the leading global logistics specialists, Hutchinson Ports to create a joint venture company to manage and operate the dry port and logistics zone.
In April of 2019, Schlumberger commenced work on a US$46 million facility which will produce drilling solutions for the regional energy industry, as a result adding 260 jobs to the workforce. Yokogawa, another anchor investor in SPARK, is in the final stages of construction work on its new high-tech equipment centre.
The Oilfields Supply Company Saudi (OSC) is also currently building an oil and gas industry user supply base to accelerate the growth of small and medium enterprises by providing ready-to-use factories with the latest specifications, along with a range of integrated services and logistical solutions. To date, OSC Saudi has completed 10 per cent of its construction and building work, becoming one of the largest investments in SPARK, with a forecasted investment of 400 million US Dollars, spanning over 1 million square meters.
The Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (APICORP) announced a US$50 million credit facility for SirajPower, a UAE distributed solar energy provider, to expand its portfolio of distributed solar energy projects across the Middle East.
The deal represents the largest lease-funding platform for distributed solar energy in the GCC.
The transaction will enable SirajPower to deploy its rooftop solar PV turnkey solutions across various industries, allowing the private sector to save on their utility bills while simultaneously offsetting their carbon footprint through an innovative structure to finance an entire portfolio of distributed solar projects on a long-term basis.
Dr Ahmed Ali Attiga, CEO of APICORP said: “Through innovative financing solutions to our partners and direct investments, APICORP plays a vital role in bringing world-class energy technologies to the region. We have witnessed a strong appetite for solar projects as a sustainable source of renewable energy by both the government and private sector in the UAE and MENA region in general.”
“SirajPower’s business model is promising of more innovations to come in the energy efficiency sector and we look forward to being part of its future success. As the trusted financial partner to the energy sector, the partnership with SirajPower demonstrates APICORP’s commitment to being a leading catalyst for sustainable development in the region,” Dr. Attiga added.
Mohammed Abdulghaffar Hussain, Chairman of SirajPower and Creek Capital, said: “We established SirajPower to act as a platform for renewable energy investments and provide stable and attractive long-term returns whilst simultaneously supporting the UAE and the wider region’s sustainable development goals. The market is full of potential, and we are gearing up to the next phase of a promising and rapid development across the wider Middle East region. Our partnership with APICORP is a testament not only to the bank’s innovative approach to financing but also to their keen desire to play a key role in the region’s burgeoning green economy.”
CC Energy Development (CCED) have marked their 100 millionth barrel milestone from blocks 3 & 4 in Oman.
The energy company has organically grown production to exceed 45,000 bbl/day. The milestone achievement comes after more than a decade of consistent growth to build sustainable output for Oman and its people.
CCED managing director, Walter Simpson, said “It gives me great pride to have achieved this milestone and it’s a well-deserved recognition for our team who have been unwaveringly committed since we began operations in Oman. We have a fundamental commitment to drive local communities and national development through the power of sustainable hydrocarbon production and it’s encouraging to see that, despite a challenging and uncertain environment, our company is resilient and our capacity for growth is strong.”
Since acquiring Blocks 3 and 4 in 2007, CCED and its partners – Tethys Oil and Mitsui E&P Middle East - have built a valuable oil production operation from the large concession. Despite the economic restraints of production restrictions, the energy producer has remained buoyant, setting an exemplary standard of safety while embracing technology and innovation for business continuity during the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“The company has shown incredible resilience in the face of the unprecedented challenges that we’ve experienced recently and I’m positive that we’ll emerge from this pandemic stronger than before,” added Simpson. “Through it all, we’ve built a workforce that is skilled, adaptable and connected to our long-term ambitions in Oman which, in itself, is a major goal for CCED. While the current global challenges have slowed our growth plans, this is temporary, and we still have ambitious exploration and production targets, including an extensive five-year exploration programme and expanding production to 50,000 barrels per day that will see us investing more than US$300 million annually.”
GE Gas Power has enhanced the efficiency and performance of ADNOC Refining’s general utilities plant in Ruwais, United Arab Emirates (UAE) by installing the MXL2 upgrade on a GT13E2 gas turbine.
Planning and executing such an upgrade typically takes up to 18 months, but the project was completed within six months, despite significant challenges posed by the outbreak of coronavirus. The technology upgrade has increased the total output of the turbine by 10.7 megawatts (MW), using the same amount of fuel.
“At GE, we are committed to supporting our customers power through every challenge and were honored to collaborate with ADNOC Refining on this project,” said Joseph Anis, President & CEO of GE Gas Power in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. “As organisations around the world explore options to balance the growing need for electricity against climate change concerns, upgrade solutions offer an effective and affordable means to increase power output and lower emissions per megawatt generated. GE is committed to continue investing in solutions that can enhance the performance of our existing installed base of more than 7,500 gas turbines globally as part of a comprehensive, economically-feasible decarbonization strategy.”
GE’s upgrade solutions can significantly enhance the performance and lower the operating costs of gas turbines. The MXL2 upgrade allows operators of GT13E2 gas turbines to achieve up to a 1.5 per cent increase in combined cycle efficiency and extend inspection intervals up to 48,000 equivalent operating hours (EOH). The upgrade combines GE’s latest technology developments, and over 10 million operating hours of GT13E2 fleet experience.