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IN OMAN SURGE BY 11PC
MUSCAT - Government revenues in Oman surged by nearly 11 per
cent in the first 10 months of the year. Revenues reached
RO2,729.8 million, compared with RO2,465.4 million in the
corresponding period of 2002, up 10.7 per cent, according to
statistics released by the Ministry of National Economy. The
budget showed a surplus of RO368.1 million for the period,
compared to a surplus of RO306 million in the first 10 months
of last year.
Oil receipts rose by 6.7 per cent to RO1,922.9 million from
RO1,802.2 million, while liquefied natural gas sales fetched
RO60.9 million, as against RO58.1 million, up 4.8 per cent.
Revenue from customs was higher by 9.5 per cent at RO46.1
million and from corporate tax by 12 per cent at RO58.7
million. Capital revenues fell by 37.3 per cent to RO7.9
million from RO12.6 million.
Public expenditure recorded a rise of 9.4 per cent - from
RO2,159.4 million RO 2,361.7 million. This was attributed to a
6.4 per cent rise in current spending which stood at RO1,790.7
million against RO1,683.3 million, and a 20.5 per cent jump in
investment spending to RO542.7 million from RO450.2 million.
Source : Khaleej Times 31 December 2003
GASCO RELEASES EPC TENDER FOR OGD - III
TAbu Dhabi Gas Industries (Gasco) released its biggest ever
enquiry for fixed price lump sum contract for engineering,
procurement, construction, commissioning and start-up (EPC)
works for its onshore gas development phase III (OGD-III)
project at Habshan, Abu Dhabi.
Gasco stated in a Press release that the enquiry was issued to
six pre-qualified bidders namely Bechtel , UK, Chiyoda , Japan,
Kellog Brown ' Roots, USA, JGC Corporation, Japan,
Snamprogetti, Italy, and Technip, France.
The company expects to receive the technical bids in March 2004.
It is planned to award the contract in the same year and the
plant start-up is slated in the year 2007. OGD-III forms the
biggest of all five EPC packages under the overall OGD-III '
AGD-II scheme. OGD-III is designed to produce 130,000 barrels
per day of condensate and 11,800 tonnes per day natural gas
liquids (NGL). The techno-economic feasibility study (pre-feed)
for the total scheme was performed by Fluor, USA, in 2000 /
2001 and the front end engineering design (feed) for the
overall project was developed by Bechtel in 2002 / 2003, with
Foster Wheler, UK, as the project management consultant for the
Gasco also stated that the schedule for releasing the EPC
package for Asab Gas Development phase II and ruwais 3rd NGL
train will be set later. Abu Dhabi Gas industries (Gasco) is
the operating company in Abu Dhabi responsible for processing
onshore natural gas and associated gas from onshore oil
Source : Khaleej Times 27 December 2003
MALAYSIAN FIRM JOINS UK LNG PROJECT
Dutch oil refiner Petroplus said recently that Malaysia's
national oil firm Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) intended
to take a stake in its planned liquefied natural gas (LNG)
terminal in Wales.
Petroplus said it signed a letter of intent under which Petronas
would take a 30 per cent stake in the project at Milford Haven,
which is expected to start importing the fuel to Britain in
Petronas would contract 2.2 million tonnes of capacity per year
at the import facility, half the plant's initial planned
In November, Petroplus signed a memorandum of understanding with
BG Energy Holding, a unit of Britain's BG Group, under which BG
would contract the other half of the terminal's capacity and
acquire a 50 per cent stake in the project. Analysts expect the
project to cost about $300 million. Petroplus shares were flat
at 6.20 euros by 1120GMT.
LNG is gas which has been supercooled into liquid form so it can
be transported by ship, rather than by pipeline, enabling
producers to target global markets rather than regional markets
linked by pipelines.
On arrival, the LNG is processed back into conventional gas and
fed into local grids. The Petroplus project is one of several
LNG terminals proposed in the UK. Britain's dependence on
imported gas is set to grow as North Sea supplies dwindle and
LNG is expected to grab a share of the UK market in the future.
(REUTERS) Khaleej Times 26 December 2003
THAILAND TO BOOST TIES IN OIL AND GAS
Discussions were held here on Saturday between top officials of
the Sultanate and Thailand, one of the major buyers of Omani
crude, aimed at further stepping up bilateral ties,
particularly in the oil and gas sector.
Visiting Thai Energy Minister Dr Prommin Lertsuridej conferred
with Oil and Gas Minister Dr Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhi,
Commerce and Industry Minister Maqbool bin Ali Sultan and other
Thailand is third on the list of countries importing oil from
Oman, accounting for nearly 20 per cent of the Sultanate's
crude shipments. Dr Lertsuridej's talks with Dr Rumhi explored
ways to develop cooperation in the energy sector and other
related issues. The discussions were attended by Oil and Gas
Under-Secretary Nassir bin Khamis Al Jashmi.
Source : Khaleej
Times 22 December 2003
OIL EXPLORATION TO FOCUS ON ABU DHABI
The main focus of oil and gas explorations in the country in
recent years has centred round the emirates of Sharjah, Ras Al
Khaimah and Umm Al Quwain, where the Norwegian company Atlantis
Holdings holds the explorations licences.
These efforts have resulted in several significant finds
including a promising gas discovery in Sharjah and reapprisal
and drilling of a gas field originally discovered off Umm Al
Quwain but not previously developed.
However, the real focus of growth in oil and gas production over
the coming years will be in Abu Dhabi where the vast majority
of the known reserves are located, said the publication of the
Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (Adma-Opco). Half of Abu
Dhabi's current oil production capacity comes from the offshore
field (1.25 million barrels per day) and nearly the other half
from onshore fields (1.2mb/d). The development programme aims
at maintaining this balance with an addition of around 200,000
b/d to each system. The emirate holds 94 per cent of the
country's total proven oil reserves of 97.8 billion barrels and
92.5 per cent of its natural gas reserves of 212 trillion cubic
Source : Khaleej Times 22 December 2003
$800M METHANOL PROJECT TO BE
SET UP IN OMAN
Oman's ambitious plans to create a heavy industry base in the
country using its abundant natural gas reserves as the
feedstock received a timely boost with the signing here on
Wednesday of a joint venture agreement for setting up a
methanol project involving a total capital outlay of around
$800 million in Sohar in the Batinah region.
The $400 million first phase of the plant, being set up by the
newly formed Oman Methanol Company (OMC), is expected to be
completed by the end of 2006. The ultra-modern facility will
have a capacity of 2,500 to 3,000 tonnes per day (tpd) using
Seventy per cent of the cost will be financed through loans and
the rest raised by promoters who said they expected financial
closure for the first phase early in the third quarter of next
year. Addressing a news conference after signing the JV deal,
they said they intended to start executing the second phase,
estimated to cost another $400 million, within two years from
the financial closure of the first.
The promoters of OMC are Oman Methanol Holding Company (OMHC),
Methanol Holding (Trinidad) Limited, Trinidad and Tobago
(MHTL), and Ferrostaal AG (FS) of Germany.
OMHC will have a 30 per cent stake in OMC and MHTL and FS 50 per
cent and 30 per cent, respectively. OMHC is owned by Dr Omar
bin Abdulmunim Al Zawawi, Adviser to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos
bin Said for External Liaison and a leading Omani businessman.
Also present were Commerce and Industry Minister Maqbool bin Ali
Sultan and Oil and Gas Minister Dr Mohammed bin Hamad Al Rumhi
together with representatives of Helm AG, the product
off-taker, KFW, the proposed lender to the project, PROMAN AG,
the construction contractor and Industrial Plant Services
Limited, the O& M contractor.
Sultan said the plant, although privately owned, would be a
"national project", adding that the government always supported
such ventures. He assured that the OMC project would be
provided with all facilities, including natural gas at a
Explaining his company's decision to invest in the Sultanate, he
said: "We have been looking all over the world for a friendly
government. We found one in Oman." MTHL already owns four
methanol plants in Trinidad and Tobago and is currently in the
process of constructing the world's largest methanol unit with a
capacity of 5,400tpd.
Ing. Axel Wippermann, executive board member of FS, said the
plant, strategically located in the Sohar industrial estate,
would provide direct employment to about 100 "highly qualified"
people. He added Asia and Europe would be the major markets for
Times 19 December 2003
OMAN SIGNS SERIES OF DEALS FOR SOHAR REFINERY PROJECT
An RO1.2 billion new oil refinery project in Oman, due to be
commissioned in 2006, has received a major fillip with the
conclusion of a series of deals covering financial guarantees,
construction, supply of feedstock and use of land.
The refinery, located in the Sohar industrial estate and fully
owned by the government, will consist of a crude unit with a
capacity of 116,400 barrels per day (bpd) and a residue fluid
catalytic cracking unit (RFCCU) with a 75,260bpd capacity.
Oil and Gas Minister Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al Rumhi, speaking to
reporters at a ceremony when the agreements were signed, said
the Sohar refinery, one of the biggest industrial ventures
being carried out in the country, was the first refinery
project to be successfully financed in the Middle East by banks
within the last 10 years.
He added that 90 per cent of its total cost was financed through
debt, pointing out that the Japanese Bank for International
Cooperation had offered a direct loan of $261.9 million, while
Nippon Exports Insurance Company provided a joint financing of
$261.9 million. Another 10 international and regional banks had
agreed to offer loans worth $907.8 million, he said.
He added a 250-kilometre-long pipeline would be built to
transport fuel oil and crude oil from Mina Al-Fahal to the
refinery, located near the Sohar Port "with its good storing
and loading facilities."
The Finance Ministry owns 80 per cent of the new refinery and
the Oman Oil Company the remaining 20 per cent. The refinery
will initially export 90 per cent of its products through a
10-year off take pact with BP, while the balance will be sold
within the country.
Japan's JGC Corporation is the EPC contractor, ABB Lummus the
project management company and LG the operation and maintenance
contractor. Bank of America Securities has appointed financial
Source : Khaleej Times 17 December 2003
INTERNATIONAL SIGNS $47 MILLION DEAL
The Dubai-based FS International FZCO signed an agreement to
form a joint venture with Denaro International Inc of the US,
for the sale and implementation of the world's most advanced
fuel vapour recovery systems. The contract is estimated at
FS International in collaboration with its American/Japanese
partners shall head the effort to substantially reduce the
gasoline vapour released at gas stations. This recovery system
is unique and one of a kind. "With more than 400 stations in the
UAE there is a significant amount of gasoline vapour released
into the air every year. Our mission is simple: cleaner
environment and less toxic air," said Fadi Semaan, FS
International's Managing Director.
FS International acquired the rights to solely represent Denaro
Japan and Denaro International USA as the business partners for
the whole region inclusive of all Gulf Arab states and some
other countries including Jordan. The company will use
Permeator Vapour Recovery System, which is designed to prevent
vapour loss from the gasoline station's underground storage
tanks by filtering the vapour through a patented membrane
system and returning it to the tank.
"We have the technology to make our air less polluted and a
healthier working environment. We hope that this shall be the
start of a similar operation with our American/Japanese
counterparts that shall be under way in the rest of the Gulf
states as part of our phase II within 12-18 months from now,"
"The amount of gasoline lost to the gas companies through
evaporation has been estimated to be in excess of $10 million
every year," said Takamaro Toyooka, President of Denaro, Japan.
"Having this system in each gas station makes them a more
efficient, environmentally healthier and a safer place to be
in," Semaan said.
"With the Permeator installed the only emission from the
station vent pipes is fresh air," said Toyooka. "The UAE, long
a proponent of responsible growth and development, shall become
the first country to showcase the cleanliness and
environmentally friendly gas stations to the region," Semaan
explained. "The UAE was selected due to the vast efforts made
by our great leaders who have supported many environmentally
friendly "green" products," said Toyooka, who is also the CEO
of Denaro Japan/USA Joint venture.
Jebel Ali-headquartered FS International FZCO provides the oil
and gas sector with engineering added value products/services.
Source : Khaleej Times 15
RUSSIAN OIL ENGINEERS VISIT UAE
Recently, a delegation of
Russian Oil Engineers and Scientists visited the UAE, headed by
Mr Olfat Ismaguilov, chief geologist , Tatnefteotdacha and Mr
Vadim Andreev, director, Research Institute for Enhanced Oil
Recovery. The companies represent two major Russian Oil regions
Tatarstan and Bashkortastan which are dealing with advance
technologies for oil well treatment and oil recovery. They
offer new solutions to treat oil wells and increase output which
includes bio, chemical, physical and vibro-seismic effect. The
use of bio-regents increases the oil output and decreases the
water level. The technologies offered by these companies are
successfully used by Russian oil giants Lukiol, Yukos, Taneft
The delegation had serious business discussions with some of the
prominent local business groups including Galadari Group of
Companies. The delegation also highly praised the level of
development achieved by the UAE in various fields and
particularly in the oil industry.
Mr Andreev said that, their visit to the UAE was productive and
positive and as the AGCC is a heart of global oil industry,
they will look forward to establish mutual relations with their
counterparts in the UAE.
They also visited Oman and had meetings with various big
companies in Oman and Ministry of Oil and Gas. This visit was
organised by Novotek group and supported by Russian Industrial
Source : Khaleej
Times 15 December 2003
PLAN FOR DOLPHIN GAS PROJECT
Qatar Petroleum and Dolphin
Energy Limited announced yesterday the signing of the Final
Field Development Plan for the forthcoming Dolphin Gas Project,
according to the Development and Production Sharing Agreement
The plan, was signed by Abdullah bin Hamad Al Attiyah, Qatar's
Second Deputy Premier and Minister of Energy and Industry, and
by Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, Dolphin Energy's Chief Executive
The signing of the Development Plan represents the final
investment decision for the project and sets out the details
for the various development stages - drilling programme,
offshore and onshore construction, compression station and
Once the Development Plan is fully implemented in 2006, Dolphin
Energy will produce natural gas from Qatar's offshore North Gas
Field and process it onshore at Ras Laffan Industrial City to
extract Condensate and NGL products. The resulting export gas
will subsequently be transported by the Dolphin pipeline to the
The project will attain full capacity within two years of
production commencement with export gas rate of 2 billion
square feet per day (bscfd), condensate production of around
100,000bpd and Natural Gas Liquids (NGL) products of around
8000 tonnes per day.
Al Sayegh said that the Plan confirms the approval of financial
and technical parameters under which the company will produce
gas in Qatar. Qatar Petroleum is a state-owned corporation
responsible for all phases of the oil and gas industry in Qatar
while Dolphin Energy was created to develop substantial energy
projects throughout the GCC states with the objective of
creating long-term economic wealth and new business
opportunities, far into the future.
Dolphin Energy's major strategic initiative, the Dolphin
Project, involves the production and processing of natural gas
from Qatar's North Field, and transportation of the dry gas by
pipeline to the UAE, beginning 2006. Its first initiative will
come on stream during the first quarter of next year when
Dolphin's natural gas pipeline from Al Ain to Fujairah is
inaugurated. The pipeline will supply the Union Water and
Electricity Company in Fujairah, initially with natural gas from
Oman, and subsequently with Dolphin gas from Qatar.
The shareholders in Dolphin Energy Ltd. are Mubaddala
Development Company that is wholly owned by the Abu Dhabi
Government, Total of France and Occidental Petroleum of the
Source : Khaleej
Times 12 December 2003