McDermott Breaks Ground on Deepwater Platform Yard

US company J Ray McDermott has begun construction on the US$20mn first phase of a US$220mn construction yard in Mexico's Tamaulipas state to build deepwater oil platforms.

"We expect to be in conditions to start building platforms in July 2007," company Mexico country manager Juan Manuel Pineda told BNamericas.

McDermott is building the yard on land at Altamira port. Mexico's government awarded the company the yard space in a 30-year concession.

The company plans to bid on platform contracts Mexico's state oil company Pemex will launch.

Further, McDermott will seek to supply projects that oil firms such as BP (NYSE: BP), Shell (NYSE: RDS-B) and Petrobras (NYSE: PBR) are developing in the Gulf of Mexico, Pineda said. The yard also could supply rigs to projects in Africa.

An additional US$60mn investment is planned for the yard project in 2007-08, he added.

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