September 2015, Vol. 242, No. 9


World News: Algeria Reforms Laws to Attract Foreign Investment

A Today in Energy brief from the U.S. Energy Information Administration said Algeria is reforming its laws to attract foreign investment in hydrocarbons. Algeria is the third-largest oil producer in Africa, after Nigeria and Angola, and the largest natural gas producer in Africa. However, production of both oil and natural gas has declined over the past decade.

Laws on foreign investment and technology improvements in hydrocarbons were altered to attract the investors. In 2014, national oil and gas company Sonatrach offered 33 blocks, located in four sedimentary basins, with high shale gas and oil potential. The auction led to contracts with Repsol, Shell, Statoil and Dragon Oil-Enel. By law, Sonatrach takes a mandatory majority share of any resulting projects.

POGC Starts Offshore Pipelay for Phases 20-21 in South Pars Field

Pars Oil and Gas Company (POGC) has begun underwater pipe-laying operations for phases 20-21 of the South Pars gas field. Once completed the 105-km pipelines will deliver sour gas to onshore refining facilities in Assaluyeh, south of Iran. So far, 40 km of Phase 21 subsea pipes. Platforms for the two phases, due to be soon, will be installed once the pipelay operations are over.

$700 Million in Guarantees Approved for Ghana’s Energy Program

The World Bank approved a record investment of $700 million in guarantees for Ghana’s Sankofa Gas project designed to help address energy shortages by developing new sources of natural gas for domestic power generation. The guarantees could mobilize $7.9 billion in private investment for offshore natural gas, representing the biggest foreign direct investment in Ghana’s history.

Developing the Sankofa Gas Project, located 60 km offshore, should bring large benefits for Ghana by fueling up to 1,000 MW of power generation to replace oil-burning electricity. Once the field produces gas in 2018, Ghana hopes to reduce its oil imports by 12 MMbbls a year and cut carbon emissions by 1.6 mmta of CO2.

Edvard Grieg Field Development Nears Completion

Lundin Norway, a subsidiary of Lundin Petroleum AB, recently completed the installation of the topside modules on the Edvard Grieg field, off Norway. The topside installation consisted of lifting four modules onto the pre-installed jacket: the main deck frame, the utility and living quarters module, the processing module and the flare boom at weight of 22,000 tons.

The lift operation was carried out by Heerema’s heavy lift vessel Thialf. The final offshore hookup and commissioning of these modules is underway with production starting in the fourth quarter. The Edvard Grieg platform is designed as a field center and will receive and process hydrocarbons from other nearby discoveries.

A dedicated pipeline was laid from the Edvard Grieg platform to the existing Grane oil pipeline for export to the Sture oil terminal. Similarly, a dedicated gas pipeline was laid to the SAGE transport system on the U.K. shelf for export of rich gas to St. Fergus in Scotland.

European Nations Join Forces on Integrated Gas Network

Fifteen EU and Energy Community countries in central eastern Europe and south east European regions have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to quicken the building of missing gas infrastructure links and to tackle the remaining technical and regulatory issues which hamper security of supply and the development of a fully integrated and competitive energy market in the region.

EU Commission Vice President for Energy Union Maroš Šef?ovi? said, “The improvement of infrastructure through realistic and feasible projects is crucial to diversify energy resources and strengthen the region’s resilience to supply shocks.”

The joint work will not only focus on building new gas pipelines, but also on making the best use of existing infrastructure for example by allowing reverse flow. Several projects – such as the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), are identified as top priorities in the action plan. Ultimately, each member state in the region should have access to at least three different sources of gas.

The MOU and action plan were signed by Šef?ovi?, EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete the energy ministers, along with representatives from Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Albania, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Ukraine. Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republic of Moldova will sign at a later date.

Petrofac to Build Gathering System in Kuwait

Petrofac has received a $780 million contract to construct a gathering system for the Kuwait Oil Company’s (KOC). The gathering system is an important part of KOC’s plans to increase and maintain crude production over the next five years.

Three gathering centers, which form part of the overall project, are under construction with Petrofac executing the EPC contract for one of the centers. Due for completion in 2017, the gathering system will provide feedstock to each of the centers via three independent networks of intermediate manifolds and pipelines. Each center will be capable of producing 100,000 bpd of oil together with associated water and gas.

Eni: Important Gas Discovery in Egyptian Nile Delta

Eni made an important gas discovery in the Nooro exploration prospect, located in the Abu Madi West license in the Nile Delta, 120 km northeast of Alexandria, Egypt. Preliminary estimates indicate the potential of 15 Bcm of gas in place, plus associated condensates. The new discovery will be put into production in two months through a tie-in to the existing Abu Madi gas treatment plant, located 250 km to the southeast.

Tallow Oil Looks for Production 10 Project in Ghana by 2016

Tallow Oil’s half-year results indicate the TEN project in Ghana is 65% complete and the field development is on budget and on schedule for first oil by mid-2016. Conversion work on the TEN FPSO continues at the Jurong Shipyard in Singapore with all major modules now installed and integration works under way. The FPSO is due to sail to Ghanaian waters at the end of the year.

Wood Group Wins FEED Contract for FLNG off Western Australia

Wood Group has secured a contract to carry out front-end engineering and design (FEED) for the Woodside-operated proposed Browse Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) development, offshore Western Australia.

Wood Group Kenny (WGK) will perform all design engineering for the insulated production flowline system required for the offshore gas condensate fields – Brecknock, Calliance and Torosa – located 300 km off the Kimberly coast. The 12-month contract, valued at $6 million will be delivered from WGK’s Perth office.

Excelerate Completes STS Transfer of LNG at Pakistan Terminal

Excelerate Energy has completed the first ship-to-ship (STS) transfer of LNG at the Engro Elengy LNG Terminal in Port Qasim, Pakistan. Excelerate’s floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU), Exquisite, received 130,000 cubic meters of LNG from the FSRU Excelerate using the double-banked LNG transfer system. This transfer marks the company’s 500th commercial STS operation using the double-banked cryogenic transfer system technology developed by Excelerate.

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