Sonatrach receives EPC bids for Arzew LNG train

Algeria's Sonatrach aims to increase its LNG export capacity by some 20% after it constructs a new 4 million-tonne/year liquefaction train at Arzew.

Eric Watkins
Senior Correspondent

LOS ANGELES, May 28 -- Algeria's Sonatrach aims to increase its LNG export capacity by some 20% after it constructs a new 4 million-tonne/year liquefaction train at Arzew.

Four groups submitted bids on May 18 for the engineering, procurement, and construction contract to build the train: Snamprogetti and Chiyoda Corp.; Petrofac International and Inti Karya Persada Tehnik of Indonesia; Technip; and KBR.

Commercial bids are due July 21 or possibly later in the summer, with an award to be made soon afterwards. The train is expected on stream by 2012.

In March, Sonatrach decided to move ahead on its own with the Arzew LNG project, as well as development of Gassi Touil gas field, after canceling an earlier agreement with Repsol YPF and Gas Natural of Spain.

The three firms had agreed to form El Andalous LNG, a joint venture of Sonatrach 20% and Repsol YPF-Gas Natural 80% to invest $3 billion in the new Arzew train.

Last September, Algeria cancelled the project including Gassi Touil gas field development, after the two Spanish companies delayed the start of work due to what they claimed was the sharp rise of costs in the LNG industry.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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