Pipeline technology specialist STATS Group has been commissioned by UAE-headquartered oil and gas EPC contractor National Petroleum Construction Company (NPCC), a subsidiary of National Marine Dredging Company, on behalf of a National Operating Company, to provide pipeline isolation, hot tapping and plugging services to the world’s largest diameter subsea pipeline intervention project.
The project is the result of STATS Group’s long-term commitment to support localisation in the Gulf region. The company employs more than 80 people and have facilities in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Muscat, Oman, and Doha, Qatar.
The scope of work will include the hot tapping and double block and bleed isolation of multiple pipelines with diameters ranging from 42” up to 56” in the Middle East region, using STATS SureTap® hot tapping machines and its patented BISEP® technology.
Mark Gault, STATS Group’s General Manager Middle East, said: “We believe this project to be a first in the world. As far as we are aware, there have been no other subsea intervention projects of this complexity or scale that involve subsea isolations on pipelines of 56” diameter.
“We have made a significant product development investment with three new large-diameter hot tapping machines and the associated isolation assets capable of handling this unique work scope. Relatedly, we are delighted to have increased our BISEP DNV Type Approval status up to 56”.”
He added: “This is a landmark project for STATS Group and reinforces our credentials for providing innovative subsea hot tapping and high integrity isolation solutions which can address diverse and technical challenges.
“Our strategy of putting in the hard yards in terms of investing in our asset base in the Middle East and in employing and training locally based staff has put us in a strong position to expand further in the region. We are continuing to recruit more staff, not only to support this exciting project with NPCC, but also in response to a broader increase in regional project work following the uncertainties of Covid-related lockdowns.”
NMDC Group CEO, Yasser Zaghloul, said: “NMDC Group is committed to developing a robust infrastructure in the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) sector, which will benefit the industry, the country and our stakeholders.
“We will continue to invest in new critical infrastructure projects, leveraging our rejuvenated skills to meet our clients’ needs, and we look forward to broadening our level of collaboration with key industry players like STATS Group to further solidify our position as the EPC major of choice for global NOCs.”
Ahmed Al Dhaheri, CEO of NPCC, said: “We are proud of this new collaboration with STATS Group, market leaders in the supply of pressurised pipeline isolation, hot tapping and plugging services to the global energy industry. NPCC has always been a pioneer in delivering mega projects, and we will continue to support and enhance our clients’ infrastructure to meet the technical, safety and environmental standards required.”
Significant investment by STATS has extended its range of hot tapping machines, which can now cater for up to 60” diameter cuts. In addition, STATS has also extended its DNV Type Approval on its BISEP and Tecno Plug® technologies, up to 56” in size.
The UK-headquartered company has a long track record of successful isolation and intervention projects in the Middle East using its BISEP double block and bleed technology, which is well established and favoured by many of the international and national oil and gas operators in region.