Royal Dutch Shell Plc  .com Rotating Header Image Abu Dhabi to split contract for gas fields

Published: July 01, 2007, 00:35

Dubai: Abu Dhabi has asked oil companies to resubmit bids for a giant sour gas project in the UAE as it divides the project into two separate contracts, a magazine reported on Friday.

Companies including BP and Royal Dutch Shell said in April they had submitted bids to develop the Shah and Bab gas fields in a contract that could have a total value of $10 billion (Dh36.7 billion).

Abu Dhabi will now ask for separate bids for the two fields as the cost and complexity of developing them together was too great, the London-based weekly Middle East Economic Digest (MEED) reported.

Second stage

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) has asked oil companies to resubmit bids for the Shah field alone by mid-July, MEED said, without citing sources.

The Bab field would be developed in a second stage, MEED quoted UAE Energy Minister Mohammad Bin Dha’en Al Hamili as saying.

The project is one of the largest open to oil and gas companies competing for limited access to the energy reserves in the Middle East.

Major firms

Saudi Arabia keeps the world’s biggest oil reserves closed to international firms, while gas exporter Qatar has a moratorium on new projects.

France’s Total, Conoco-Phillips and the US’s Occidental Petroleum Corp were also bidding for the project, industry sources had said in April.

The sour gas in the UAE’s Shah and Bab fields, with a content of around 30 per cent of deadly hydrogen sulphide, is tougher to produce than sweeter gas reserves.

The UAE holds the world’s fifth-largest gas reserves at over 200 trillion cubic feet, and needs to develop them to meet soaring domestic demand. and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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