Santos Awards MOPU Contract for Maleo Development

PT Radiant Utama Interinsco (RUI) of Indonesia in association with Global Process Systems (GPS), have been awarded a major contract to supply a Mobile Offshore Production Unit (MOPU) to Santos of Australia for the Maleo Gas Development in East Java, Indonesia. The total value of the contract, which includes design, fabrication and supply of the MOPU, is estimated to be in excess of US $100 million.

The MOPU facility will be provided on a bareboat with operating charter basis from early second quarter 2006 for a minimum four years with an option for an additional 8 years on a year to year basis.

Located approximately 25 km south of Puteran Island at the eastern end of Madura Island, the Maleo Development is situated in water depths of some 57 meters. The Development is remote from any existing oil and gas infrastructure and will therefore be operated as a standalone facility.

Santos (Madura Offshore) Pty Ltd and Petronas Carigali of Malaysia hold the Production Sharing Contract for the Maleo Field. The gas produced will be exported via a new subsea pipeline and tie-in to the existing East Java Gas Pipeline.

This is the second MOPU project to be awarded to GPS in South East Asia, following the contract awarded earlier in the year by Petrofac for the Cendor Oil Development in Malaysia.

Clint Elgar, President of GPS, says, "We have been pursuing a number of projects that will use MOPU facilities and we are delighted that the second of these will be delivered to Santos in Indonesia. The selection of a MOPU facility for Santos at the Maleo Field Development Project is the perfect choice, as it will enable production to be expedited far more quickly than with a conventional production platform."

The MOPU solution comprises a jack-up drilling rig converted into an oil and gas production platform. It operates as a stand alone oil and gas process facility in a number of different applications at the early production or permanent production stages of the upstream oilfield lifecycle. Designed to expedite first oil and gas production, a MOPU facility can be built in less than 12 months, as compared to the minimum 3 years required for commissioning a conventional platform.

"The advantage of MOPU facilities is that they can be configured quickly to suit specific oil or gas production requirements, mobilized to site and put into production on a fast-track basis. The availability of a MOPU can often be the deciding factor that turns a marginal non-economic development into a highly successful producing asset," adds Elgar. "This project is a first step for the GPS Group in Indonesia and we hope to build on this success with a number of other prospects that are currently on the horizon."

GPS' Dubai hub General Manager, Keith Walker says, "Our track record in the conversion of drilling facilities for production activity has already been proven on the work we carried out on the ESP-1 Jack-Up for duty on Shell Soroosh Field, Offshore Iran. We are delighted to be able to bring this capability to Indonesia for Santos on this ground-breaking project."

Work will commence immediately at GPS' Dubai offices on the design and engineering of the processing facilities required. The jack-up rig has already been acquired and work began recently on upgrading the marine components in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.