Thursday, 8 July 2010

Algeria puts Hassi Messaoud construction contract on hold

A Reuters report this week confirmed what we have already reported, namely that Algeria has put on hold the large Hassi Messaoud construction contract it had earmarked for Canada's SNC-Lavalin as part of a major overhaul of Sonatrach’s dealings with contractors.

SNC-Lavalin , Canada's biggest engineering company, had been named as preferred bidder for a contract to rebuild Hassi Messaoud, the hub of Algeria's oil industry.

"We were waiting to sign the contract," Leslie Quinton, SNC-Lavalin's Vice-President for Global Corporate Communications, said in an email to Reuters. "A few weeks ago, it was announced that the process was suspended, pending further studies and additional evaluation."

According to a report in El Khabar on 30th June, a total of 160 contracts which Sonatrach had agreed with suppliers and contractors had been put on hold pending a review.

Oil and gas permits awarded to foreign energy firms are reportedly not affected. However, new rules will apply to all international energy services firms operating in Algeria, which include companies such as Schlumberger, Baker Hughes and Halliburton.

For more news and expert analysis please Sahara Focus and Algeria Politics & Security.

© 2010 Menas Associates

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