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Kuwait set to award $4bn oil contract.

KUWAIT CITY: Kuwait plans to award a 1.2 billion dinar ($4.3bn) contract later this year for the first phase of a project to produce heavy oil at its northern Ratqa field, the head of state-owned Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) said.

The project is part of efforts to meet Kuwait's target of producing four million barrels of oil per day (bpd) by 2020. The Opec member currently produces around 3m bpd and exports around two-thirds.

The deadline for bids for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract is May 11, but this may be extended if companies continue to have queries, KOC chief executive Hashem Hashem said on the sidelines of an oil conference yesterday.

"This is (for) facilities needed to develop heavy oil, to be able to produce up to 60,000 (bpd)," he said of the planned first phase of the project at Kuwait's northern Ratqa field.

"All the international EPC contractors showed interest, and they are actively participating in this bid," he said.

KOC will spend about three months assessing the bids and award the contract by about October, he added.

The 60,000 bpd should be online by 2017 or 2018, he told the conference. By 2020, the production should be 120,000 bpd and KOC will evaluate whether it needs to raise this to 270,000 bpd beyond that date, he said.

Kuwait's current capacity is around 3.25m bpd, with KOC's share at around 3m bpd, Hashem said.

To bring the capacity up to 4m bpd by 2020, KOC will contribute an extra 650,000 bpd, he added.

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Geographic Code:7KUWA
Date:Apr 16, 2014
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