Leighton and Sapura front-runners for PRP-VI

Vol 22, PW 11 (21 Mar 19) Exploration & Production

Leighton India Contractors and Sapura Energy are the main front-runners for a multi-million dollar ONGC contract to replace old subsea pipelines and modify the topsides of Mumbai High oilfield platforms.

ONGC and industry sources tell us Leighton is best qualified to execute the Pipeline Replacement Project-VI (PRP-VI) at India's largest offshore field. Leighton's experience executing an earlier PRP-III upgrade for ONGC gives it a distinct advantage not to mention that it has its own pipe-laying barge and other subsea equipment, they say.

Faced with a drought of opportunities in Australia, home to parent company CIMIC Group, Leighton is hungry for work overseas, we hear. Malaysian contractor Sapura also has a strong chance of clinching this contract as it is already on location executing PRP-V for ONGC, controversially won in 2018 against UAE-based Valentine Maritime with Indian partner Supreme Offshore who bid lowest.

Like Leighton, Sapura also has its own pipe laying barges. "Sapura's biggest advantage," we hear, "is that it is already mobilised (for PRP-V)."

 Estimated to cost between $150m-$200m, the PRP-VI upgrade proposes the replacement of 123.87-km subsea fluid and gas pipelines plus topside modifications to 18 platforms within the NLP, MSP and BCPA-3 complexes. Leighton is likely to bid with an Indian sub-contractor with its own manufacturing yard to modify topsides, similar to DAS Offshore.

By contrast Sapura can upgrade topsides at its own facilities but still might bid with a local partner.