Photo: Greater Tortue Ahmeyim LNG project; Sourc: BP

FPSO delays and cost overruns impact first gas timing at Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project

The BP-operated Greater Tortue Ahmeyim (GTA) project in Mauritania and Senegal has experienced delays and cost overruns due to the Covid-19 pandemic and, as a result, the first gas from the project has been postponed.

BP is the operator of the project and Kosmos Energy is its partner. In an update on Tuesday, Kosmos said that project partners have received a revised forecast from the EPCIC contractor, TechnipFMC, that the delivery of the FPSO is likely to be slightly delayed due to labour shortages at the COSCO yard in China following a ramp-up in activity at the shipyard as the pandemic recedes.

This delay, currently anticipated to be around three months, is expected to push the timing of the first gas to the third quarter of 2023, Kosmos explained.

BP, as the operator of the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project, has informed partners that due to the impacts of Covid-19 (including the FPSO delay), cost inflation and scope growth, Phase 1 project costs are expected to increase.

On the basis of the revised schedule, Kosmos currently expects the gross cost for the project to be approximately 15 per cent higher, resulting in an estimated increase of Phase 1 costs to first gas net to Kosmos of around $100 million, coming primarily in 2023.

The FPSO sale and leaseback transaction is now expected to close this quarter upon the finalization of the documentation between the governments and partners. Following the closing of the FPSO sale and leaseback transaction, the company will work to complete the refinancing of the National Oil Company loans.

In addition, partners continue to make progress on Phase 2 of the GTA LNG project and are targeting a final investment decision in late 2022 as previously communicated.

Andrew G. Inglis, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Kosmos said: “In Mauritania and Senegal, the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project continued to make steady progress during the quarter with key milestones achieved across all major workstreams.

“However, we are seeing cost inflation and supplier delays in the current environment together with some scope growth and, as a result, we are updating our estimates, with first gas now expected in the third quarter of 2023”.

When it comes to project milestones, the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim liquified natural gas (LNG) project has made steady progress year-to-date.

As previously reported, the project’s Phase 1 was 58 per cent done at the end of the first quarter.

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According to Kosmos’ latest update, the milestones achieved in the second quarter include the work on the floating LNG (FLNG) vessel where the four remaining sponsons have been integrated in the final dry dock. Furthermore, the living quarters have been installed on the FPSO and five caissons have now been transported offshore with the first caisson installed. In addition, all subsea trees have been constructed.

The Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project will produce gas from an ultra-deepwater subsea system and mid-water floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel, which will process the gas, removing heavier hydrocarbon components.

The gas will then be transferred to an FLNG facility at a nearshore hub located on the Mauritania and Senegal maritime border.

Recently, Petrofac secured a contract with BP to develop operational procedures for the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project. Furthermore, Havfram secured a contract with Technip Energies for the pre-installation and hook-up of the subsea mooring system for the FPSO at the GTA project.