Tanker Pacific Wins Maari FPSO Contract

Tanker Pacific Offshore Terminals of Singapore has been selected to supply and operate the floating production, storage, and offloading (FPSO) vessel for the NZ$540 million (US$337 million) Maari oilfield project. Ensco Oceanic International has been selected for the development drilling.

In its latest quarterly report the Sydney-based Horizon Oil says that the Maari joint venture (operated by OMV) has executed letters of intent with the three major contractors selected for the 50 million-barrel oil field development.

Tanker Pacific is the world's largest private offshore storage provider. The FPSO vessel will process and store oil from the Maari field before it is offloaded to calling tankers.

The development drilling will be carried out by the international offshore drill operator Ensco Oceanic International.

The third major contract for the wellhead platform, as announced in January, is to be built and installed by the Perth-based engineering and construction firm Clough.

Horizon says that the letters of intent are based on fixed price tenders by the successful bidders for the major contracts. The letters allow the contractors to get underway in advance of final documentation so that project deadlines will be met.

The development is now proceeding on track, with project teams for construction of the wellhead platform and FPSO mobilized, Horizon reports.

A Maari construction schedule, published by Horizon from a November presentation to the annual meeting, indicates that the wellhead platform is due to be installed in November 2007.

This would be followed in December by both the commencement of development drilling and the installation of moorings and flowlines ready for the FPSO to arrive in early 2008. The field is due to be commissioned March 2008.

Horizon says the Maari joint venture has applied for an appraisal extension over the nearby Manaia discovery (the Maui-4 well drilled soon after the original Maui gas field discovery). Approval of the Manaia discovery is likely be carried out in association with Maari development drilling. Production from Manaia will be processed through the Maari facilities.