Boskalis Wins Nord Stream, Saudi Contracts

Dutch dredging group Boskalis Westminster NV said on Thursday it had secured oil and gas contracts worth 100 million euros ($136 million), including work on the Nord Stream Baltic gas pipeline project.

Boskalis said it will prepare for the laying of the 1,220 km double subsea pipeline from Russia to Northern Germany using about 320,000 tonnes of rock to level and stabilise the seabed along the full distance of the Nord Stream project.

It will also work on the shore approach of the pipeline in Germany, which will involve the dredging of a 23 km trench for the pipes.

It said both projects would be realised in 2010.

The firm also said it had signed a contract to work on the construction of an oil pipeline from the Safaniyah offshore field to mainland Saudi Arabia. The project will be executed in 2009 for state-run Saudi Aramco.

Italian oil field services group Saipem will be the leading contractor in the projects, Boskalis said.

The European Union sees the plan to pump 55 billion cubic meters of Russian gas annually to Europe via Germany as a key project to ensure secure gas supplies for Europe.

But it has been delayed for years because of concerns over its environmental impact and fears that it might harm the interests of some eastern European countries.

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