N’Goma FPSO reaches Angola following a long journey
Following a voyage of 7,331 miles (13,577km), N’Goma FPSO safely berthed at Paenal’s 490-metre quayside at Port Amboim on 17th June 2014. The arrival of the vessel in Angola from Singapore marks the young yard’s second mega FPSO in just eight months.
“Welcoming N’Goma helps to cement Paenal’s key position in the oil industry. Two of the FPSO’s modules were fabricated here, the Sulphate Removal Package and the Hot Oil Pump, both of which have been successfully lifted and integrated onboard the vessel. Paenal is building a reputation as a world-class fabrication and integration yard,” says Cesar Guerra, the yard’s General Manager.
Porto Amboim Estaleiros Navais Ltda – known as Paenal yard – represents an important part in the sustainable growth for Angola. The yard – a joint venture partnership between national oil company Sonangol, SBM Offshore and DSME with holdings of 40%, 30% and 30% respectively – provides an ideal base for the oil industry’s exploration and production offshore West Africa.
“The shipyard is the biggest employer in the region with over 1,200 employees of which over 85% are Angolan. This is an important consideration for our clients. SBM’s first FPSO to berth at Paenal is an important milestone for both the yard and the country,” says Jean-Philippe Rodrigues, SBM Offshore Business Development Senior Vice President.
“It demonstrates SBM’s extensive worldwide expertise in relocations and our EPCI capacity across the lifecycle. Together with our partners we look forward to the completion of this large FPSO for our client ENI,” says Ivan Replumaz, Managing Director SBM Offshore Malaysia.
“To meet the project’s specific requirements, the conversion included major upgrade work on the hull, turret and integration of new and refurbished topsides, which was successfully completed in Singapore at Keppel Shipyard. We are now committed to concluding the heavy lifting campaign and integration at Paenal,” says Jerome Garidou, Project Manager.
Once the FPSO is completed, operations will begin on the Eni operated Block 15/06 West Hub offshore Angola by OPS – a joint venture company between Sonangol and SBM Offshore – which celebrated its 10th year anniversary of operations this month.
“The OPS team is keen to welcome the N’Goma FPSO into the Angolan fleet and to start a fruitful relationship with ENI Angola SpA under the 12-year lease and operate contract,” says Fabrice Dumortier, OPS General Manager.
Inaugurated in 2008, Paenal shipyard was established to meet Angola’s vital need to develop manufacturing technology and to facilitate the integration of FPSO modules. The Heavy Lift Crane (HLC) rated 2500t, which was inaugurated in 2013, combined with 490 metres of purpose-built quayside, means that the yard is fully commissioned and can accommodate the installation of topsides onto mega FPSOs. Paenal is capable of producing up to 10,000 tons of modules per year.
To put in place the required skilled workers sourced locally and meet international standards required an initiative and investment by the shipyard’s partners. In parallel with construction of the yard a dedicated training school was established in Porto Amboim, which contributes to the knowledge base of Angola’s oil & gas industry. Since 2008 the yard’s workforce has grown exponentially. From a humble start six years ago, almost 1,200 people are now employed, of which 85% are Angolan nationals – a level well above the 70% minimum imposed on the industry by the government. Globally SBM Offshore employs over 1,700 people in their Angolan operations (including Paenal) and has been established in the country since 1997.
The FPSO is owned by the company Sonasing. Shareholders: SBM Offshore, Sonangol and Angolan Offshore Services. Formerly FPSO Xikomba it was disconnected from Angola Block 15 in 2011 where it had operated for eight years. SBM is converting the FPSO, renamed N’Goma, and it will be operated by OPS. The relocated N’Goma FPSO will start producing on the Eni-operated Block 15/06 West Hub in Angolan waters.
The FPSO will have a total oil processing capacity of 100,000 bpd, gas handling capacity of 115 MMSCF per day and water Injection capacity of 120,000 bpd.
In June 2014 OPS celebrated ten years in operations, marking 41 years of cumulative FPSO experience offshore Angola. It is a joint venture between Sonangol (50%) and SBM Offshore (50%).
In a ten year period (2004-2014) with an uptime of 99% and 15 million manhours, the OPS fleet has produced over 703 million barrels of oil, which represents a significant part of Angolan national oil production. Nine years without Lost Time Injury (LTI) demonstrates the Company’s firm commitment to its safety values.
The company’s head office is based in Luanda and has shore bases in Cabinda and Soyo; it employs 450 people onshore and offshore.