An Aramco tank is seen at Saudi Aramco's Ras Tanura oil refinery and oil terminal in Saudi Arabia May 21, 2018. Picture taken May 21, 2018. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah
Development of offshore fields is integral to Saudi Arabia's plans to maintain production capacity. Reuters

Saudi Aramco awards Baker Hughes contract to expand Marjan field



Saudi Aramco has awarded Baker Hughes a contract to develop its Marjan field as the world's biggest oil producing company looks to ramp up production offshore by 2023.

Aramco did not disclose the value of the contract in a statement on Tuesday.

“The Marjan oilfield is one of the major upstream developments this year that will contribute to the kingdom’s oil production strengths, helping maintain capacity and meet domestic and global demand," said Mohammed Al Qahtani, senior vice president of upstream at Aramco.

Baker Hughes, which is part of GE, will begin work on the field's capacity expansion this month, with the scope of contract includes drilling, reservoir navigation and associated services.

Saudi Arabia, which accounts for 12.9 per cent of the world's oil output, is undertaking field development work offshore the kingdom to offset onshore decline and help maintain its production capacity at around 12 million barrels per day. Marjan, along with Berri and Zuluf fields, are on target for capacity expansion to more than one million bpd.

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Last year, Aramco awarded UK group Amec Foster Wheeler a contract to provide key offshore and onshore work on the Marjan field.

Development of spare capacity is critical for Saudi Arabia, which plays a significant role as a swing producer within Opec. Aramco has upped production since July as part of a concerted effort by Opec and its allies to balance the oil markets amid a resurgence in crude prices. Saudi Arabia reported 10.288 million bpd crude oil production at the end of July, a nearly 350,000 bpd jump from its self-reported figures for the first quarter.

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