Sharjah’s SNOC awards $40m gas storage project to Petrofac

The project will help the emirate to store excess gas in winter to meet summer peak demand

SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 30 September 2017. STANDALONE. The Sharjah skyline lights reflect in the Al Khan Lagoon while moored vessels wait out the humid night. (Photo: Antonie Robertson/The National) Journalist: None. Section: Standalone.
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Sharjah National Oil Corporation (SNOC) awarded a US$40 million (Dh147m) contract to oil services company Petrofac Facilities Management International, to develop a gas storage project in the emirate.

As part of the contract, Petrofac will develop a new high-pressure compressor facility, a high-pressure pipeline and flow lines to four existing wells in Moveyeid field, state-owned SNOC said on Tuesday.

“The project will allow us to store excess gas in the winter to satisfy the summer peak demand. It will also provide a readily available strategic reserve to respond to unexpected operational or market issues where connectivity and proximity become most critical,” said Hatem Al Mosa, chief executive of SNOC.

The company is planning to implement the project in phases, with the surface facilities to be commissioned by the end of 2020 and drilling in 2023. It will also evaluate the need for expanding the storage and delivery capacity of the project beyond 2023.

“Gas storage has been on the Sajaa Asset agenda since 2003," Mr Al Mosa said. "SNOC owns the ideal reservoir for such a project in terms of size, proximity to pipeline infrastructure, connectivity and composition. However, the historic chronic shortage of gas to provide the cushion gas prevented the project from becoming a reality at that time."

The development comes as SNOC and its Italian partner Eni announced a successful new discovery of natural gas and condensate onshore in Sharjah earlier this year. The discovery, named "Mahani", comes within the first year of a partnership between the two companies and represents the first onshore discovery of gas in Sharjah since the early 1980's.

SNOC, established in 2010, is tasked with exploration, production, engineering, construction, operation and maintenance of Sharjah's energy assets. In addition to the newly discovered Mahani gasfield, SNOC owns and operates three onshore fields, a gas processing complex, two hydrocarbon liquid storage and export terminals and a network of flow lines and production pipelines.

The Sajaa Gas complex in Sharjah is the hub of nearly all of the gas pipelines connecting the Northern Emirates and Dubai. It has been delivering gas to the Northern Emirates for 38 years.