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Operator faces up to transport and logistics challenge

A major challenge with many of Kazakhstan’s huge oil and gas developments – including Tengiz, Karachaganak and Kashagan - is the transport of structures built locally and overseas to oilfield sites, writes Iain Esau.

For the Tengiz FG-MWP project, TengizChevroil awarded a consortium involving Denmark’s Blue Water Shipping and local player Kazmortransflot a contract in 2016 to supply transport and logistics services.

The consortium has overall responsibility for transporting 75 modules and cargo (individually weighing up to 1600 tonnes) between Kuryk port on the Kazakh coast to the port of Prorva, close to the Tengiz field.

Blue Water is handling transport and project management while Kazmortransflot will supply and operate three specially designed module carrying vessels (MCVs).

The new vessels, 113 metres long and 21 metres wide, are under construction at Vard shipyard in Romania.

Kazmortransflot has sub-contracted technical management of the MCVs to Topaz Energy and Marine.

Blue Water, working with Topaz, also has a $350-million contract to supply TengizChevroil with 15 MCVs to transport FG-WPM modules through Russia’s river systems to Prorva. These vessels are being built in Romania and Vietnam.

Meanwhile, another Belgian company called Sarens will be responsible for the land transportation and installation of the pre-assembled units, pre-assembled racks and other equipment for the FG-WPM project.

Sarens must develop and operate two trans-shipment bases in Finland and Bulgaria where cargo will be offloaded from ocean going vessels and loaded onto smaller inland waterway vessels for transport to the Caspian via Russia’s canal and river network.

On arrival in Kazakhstan, the company will offload, store, stack and transport modules to their installation points.

Upstream understands that Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering is due to begin delivering modules for the FG-WPM project next year.

Daewoo was awarded a $2.6 billion contract in late 2014 to fabricate and supply 240,000 tonnes of modules, although work only seriously got going in mid-2016 when the revised project was approved.

The Tengiz and Korolev fields hold up to 9 billion barrels of recoverable oil, with Tengiz housing some 7.5 billion barrels of this volume out of in in-place resources approaching 26 billion barrels.

The partners in TengizChevroil are Chevron, with a 50% stake, state-owned KazMunayGas on 20%, ExxonMobil on 25% and Lukoil on 5%.

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