Mero’s submarine umbilicals may not have local content

06/05/2019

Mero’s submarine umbilicals may not have local content. In parallel to the bidding to contract steel lines (STU) for the field with a minimum requirement of 40%, Petrobras promotes a second process without nationalization requirement.

The scope of the contract, which will last two years, provides for the acquisition of 59,350 km of umbilicals, in addition to the provision of monitoring and testing services. Originally, 55% nationalization was planned, but the index was then reduced.

The delivery of the equipment will have to be done in the Port of Açu, in São João da Barra (RJ), or in the Vitória Terminal (Bavit), in Espírito Santo.

This will be the first time that Petrobras will use STU – in its projects, the company has always resorted to thermoplastic umbilicals. The point is that not all suppliers have completed the technology qualification process with the oil company, which creates uncertainties about the future of the bidding.

“The qualification of an umbilical structure is a very high investment. In addition to the poor scenario in recent years, Petrobras does not confirm future demands for this product, so it is difficult to justify the investment internally, “said a source heard by BE Petróleo.

In general, operators require qualification, but do not oblige manufacturers to pay for the risk process, allowing the inclusion of the value in the project and providing time to qualify the solution during the execution of the contract.

Potential candidates for the contract include Aker Solutions, Prysmian, TechnipFMC, Oceaneering, MfX and Nexans. Today, in Brazil, only  MxF, Prysmian and Oceaneering have umbilical factories, respectively in Salvador (BA), Vila Velha (ES) and Niterói (RJ).

The deadline for submission of proposals was scheduled for Thursday, but was postponed until today, 6 May.

The Libra consortium is formed by Petrobras (operator with 30%), Shell (20%), Total (20%), CNOOC (10%) and CNPC (10%). The first oil in the area is scheduled for 2021.

Other bids

In addition to the tender for Mero, Petrobras promotes tenders to contract umbilicals for the Roncador fields, for the Forno and Atapu Long-Term Tests (TLD). The Farfan tender, in the Sergipe-Alagoas Basin, has been canceled – the expectation is for the state company to use lines from one of its umbrella contracts (frame-agreements).

Source: Brazil Energy

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