GSPL tenders disappoint pipe manufacturers

Vol 17, PW 11 (16 Jan 14) Midstream & Downstream

Pipe manufacturers are disappointed that three cross-country gas pipeline tenders from Gujarat State Petronet (GSPL) are smaller than expected.

GSPL is authorised by regulator PNGRB to lay and operate 3995-km of cross-country gas pipeline but has issued tenders for only 696-km of trunk pipeline and 809-km of spur pipeline. "We expected tenders for much larger pipe quantities," says one contractor.

A GSPL source explains it had difficulty acquiring hundreds of different clearances and so issued tenders only for stretches where clearances were secured. Pipe manufacturers are also frustrated they cannot bid directly to GSPL to supply pipe.

Instead, GSPL has specified the selected pipeline laying contractors will also source pipe supplies. "We'll appoint EPC contractors to source or buy pipe from mills approved by us," says GSPL.

"EPC contractors will lay, test and hand over the pipeline to us for commissioning." It is easier for GSPL to deal only with EPC contractors rather than also dealing with pipe manufacturers.

GSPL aims to appoint pipeline laying contractors by April 2014. Corrtech, Jaihind Projects, Punj Lloyd, L&T, Essar, Fabtech, Fernas, Tecton Engineering, KazStroyService and Zen Gas are likely to compete.

GSPL is laying a 1585-km pipeline from Mallavaram in Andhra Pradesh to Bhilwara in Rajasthan, a 1670-km pipeline from Mehsana in Gujarat to Bhatinda in Punjab and a 740-km pipeline from Bhatinda to Srinagar in Kashmir, passing through Jammu.