Statoil Awards Ten-Year Tug Contract to Bukser og Berging

A 10-year contract worth just under NOK 300 million has been awarded by Statoil to Norwegian towing specialist Bukser og Berging. The deal covers tug and mooring services at Melkoya, near Hammerfest in northern Norway.

Embracing the hire of three tugs and two mooring boats, this deal also includes options for two five-year extensions.

All the tugs are due to be built by the Moen Slip yard at Kolvereid in mid-Norway, becoming operational at Melkoya from the end of 2005.

The five vessels will all fly the Norwegian flag and be crewed by Norwegian nationals. This contract represents 18-20 new jobs.

"The tugs are being acquired to ensure safe and reliable export of liquefied natural gas and other products from Melkoya," explains Trygve G Egge, project manager for Snohvit LNG shipping in Statoil.

"Their principal duties will include escorting ships entering and leaving the Melkoya terminal, as well as assisting them to berth and depart."

The tug fleet will comprise one combined escort and harbor tug with a bollard pull of 90 tons, and two harbor tugs with bollard pulls of 70 tons apiece.

These vessels will also be able to provide services for oil spill clean-up and fire-fighting.

The two mooring boats will each be about 12 meters long and will be used to carry hawsers from a vessel to land during berthing.

Statoil has placed the tug job on behalf of the partners in the Snohvit license.