UAE Extends Dolphin Bid Deadline

The United Arab Emirates' Offsets Group (UOG) has extended to April the deadline for bids for a 24.5 percent stake in the inter-Gulf Dolphin gas project. The stake on offer had been held by energy trader Enron, which pulled out of the project long before its collapse.

UOG, an investment arm of the UAE government that owns 75.5 percent of Dolphin Energy Ltd, set up to channel two billion cubic feet a day of Qatari gas to the UAE, in August short-listed five energy majors to bid for a 24.5 percent stake in the firm. France's TotalFinaElf owns the remaining 24.5 percent.

Bids were supposed to be submitted by December but a UOG statement said the firms now had until April 6. It did not give a reason for the extension. It said the final selection would be made by mid-2002. The short-listed firms are ExxonMobil, BP, Shell, Conoco and Occidential. The successful firm will take charge of building and running the project's subsea pipeline.