Sapura complains against ONGC disqualification

Vol 20, PW 25 (07 Sep 17) Exploration & Production

ONGC's plan to ramp up Daman gas production to 8m cm/d by 2020 is facing further delays following a complaint by Sapura Offshore against its disqualification from the EPC development tender.

PETROWATCH learns ONGC's Independent External Monitors, three retired bureaucrats, heard Sapura and ONGC case on September 1. Originally, the Monitors were to hear the case on September 4 but advanced the date.

Expect a ruling within the next few days. ONGC's Executive Purchase Committee disqualified Sapura on August 23 and asked the tender committee to open Larsen & Toubro's bid, which it did that evening.

L&T quoted $199m - sources claim this is much higher than Sapura's quote. Almost immediately, Sapura complained to the monitors.

As we reported in our August 10 edition L&T had earlier written to ONGC on July 28 demanding Sapura's disqualification for sending in an unaudited financial report from accountants Ernst & Young instead of an audited report. ONGC asked Sapura to clarify and the Malaysian contractor replied that the Malaysian financial year ends on January 31 so it could not submit an audited balance sheet by the July 20 bid deadline.

Sapura also submitted a letter from E&Y certifying its financial strength and that of its subsidiaries plus confirmation that Sapura's net worth is positive. After its bad experience with Swiber, which left the Daman job unfinished, ONGC introduced a condition making it mandatory to file a composite audited balance sheet and financial statements from the bidding company and any subsidiaries.

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