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| 22 March, 2018

Bahrain starts work on $670mln gas pipeline project

The 5km pipeline, which will store liquefied gas to import and for conversion

State-run Bahrain Petroleum Co (Bapco) refinery is seen during the early evening hours from the village of Ma'aameer south of Manama, Bahrain, August 22, 2017.

State-run Bahrain Petroleum Co (Bapco) refinery is seen during the early evening hours from the village of Ma'aameer south of Manama, Bahrain, August 22, 2017.

REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

Bahrain - A no-go zone has been marked in northern Bahraini waters as work on a $670 million submarine gas pipeline starts.

The 5km pipeline, which will store liquefied gas to import and for conversion, will be fully installed under Bahrain’s sea by the end of the year.

Seafarers are being urged to stay clear of the area located north east of the Khalifa Bin Salman Port (KBSP), where work will be ongoing until August.

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Bahrain LNG (BLNG) Terminal is spearheading the project, which involves the construction a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) receiving terminal, a regasification unit, which is the conversion process of LNG temperature back to natural gas at atmospheric temperature, along with associated facilities.

The work includes trenching, pipe laying, testing and backfilling on the pipe which connects the BLNG Terminal’s onshore and offshore facilities.

BNLG project team chief financial officer Owais Ahmad told the GDN that work on laying the submarine pipelines and cables started this week.

“The project would provide energy security to the country by providing an option to import, store and regasify the LNG as and when required,” he said.

“The pipe is basically for the supply of LNG received and stored at BLNG’s offshore receiving and floating storage facility to the company’s onshore facility for regasification.

“The project is being constructed under an Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract at an estimated project cost of $670m.”

The company has urged seafarers to stay clear of the marine construction site, which has been marked with anchor buoys and flashing lights.

Security vessels will also guard the area and monitoring of all expected vessels operating in the area will be conducted.

“Like construction sites on shore, the offshore construction area is a potentially dangerous place for non-project persons and non-project vessels,” said Mr Ahmad.

“It’s a busy industrial zone containing heavy machinery, barges, moving vessels and anchor cables, all working 24 hours a day.

“The work areas are clearly marked out with buoys and the Ports and Maritime Authority monitor all vessel movements in the area.

“Members of the public are requested to keep away from the marked out areas during construction for their own safety and for the safety of the construction teams.”

The construction site will be divided into two sections; one is an exclusion zone for the safe passage activities where authorised vessels are permitted to enter, while the other area will be safe passage zone.

“Safety and security boats will be guarding the area while monitoring and all expected vessels operating in the area are urged to exercise extreme caution when transiting the area,” added Mr Ahmad.

“Passage is permitted only within the dedicated safe passage zone during the construction period.”

The BLNG project is part of a number of current or upcoming oil and gas projects worth $6 billion, the GDN reported in January.

Oil Minister Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa said at the time that these projects include the multi-billion dollar Bapco modernisation programme, Bahrain National Gas Expansion Company’s third gas plant, and an aromatics facility joint venture between Bapco and Kuwait’s Petrochemical Industries Corporation.

The BNLG is owned by the Oil and Gas Holding Company, Teekay LNG Partners, Samsung C&T and Gulf Investment Corporation.

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