Vision hits back as ONGC vessel row escalates

Vol 20, PW 12 (09 Mar 17) People & Policy

Singapore-based Vision Projects Technologies has hit back at allegations by Mumbai-based rival Raj Shipping that it made false statements to win a Halliburton contract to hire its vessel Lewek Fulmar to ONGC.

Halliburton won a bundled services contract from ONGC in 2016 to support five deepwater rigs working in the eastern offshore. On October 5, 2016 Halliburton awarded Vision a contract for four Platform Supply Vessels (PSVs) and Four Anchor Handling Tugs (AHTs).

Raj later wrote to shipping minister Nitin Gadkari on February 23, 2017 accusing Vision of "fraud and concealment of data." Raj believes Vision was wrong to mobilise 402-tonne bollard pull capacity AHT Panama-flagged vessel Fulmar for the job when only a 180-tonne capacity vessel is needed by ONGC. Second, Raj believes that as an Indian company it had a good chance to win the Halliburton/ONGC contract for two firm years plus two optional years.

It says that it would have offered its 184-tonne bollard pull capacity Anchor AHT Offshore Energy, converted to Indian flag on December 15, 2016, if only it had known the job was available. It accuses Vision of trying to conceal the fact that the ONGC job was available by only informing the Indian National Shipowners Association on December 16, 2016 that it was mobilising a 402-tonne AHT to Indian waters.

Raj argues if more details had been supplied by Vision then it and other Indian vessel owners would have also learned of ONGC's requirement for a 180-tonne AHT.