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LNG Contract in Australia a tremendous win

Winning the Wheatstone terminal towage contract shows confidence in Svitzer as the preferred towage provider in the global LNG terminal market.

In November SVITZER Australasia signed a 20-year marine services contract for the Chevron-operated Wheatstone project in remote North Western Australia. This happened only two years after winning the competitive tender for the Gorgon project. Along with the Soyo LNG Terminal project in Angola, SVITZER has put the pen to the three largest LNG terminal towage tenders globally in the last 5 years. 

“Winning the Wheatstone project is a tremendous achievement of a great global team pulling in the same direction across offices and functions,” says CEO Robert Uggla and adds: “but let us remember that the really hard work starts now.” 

According to Global Head of Business Development, Kasper Nilaus, the value of the project is enormous. Wheatstone will be one of Australia’s largest resource projects, representing a revenue many times bigger than SVITZER’s usual contracts. “This win is an extremely important milestone for our business,” Kasper says. “First of all, it represents a major investment and therefore also a major income stream for the next 20 years. Secondly, it confirms that SVITZER is the preferred provider to the high-end LNG terminal towage market.” 

VALUE CREATION AND STRONG BACKUP

A pilot boat and four 34 metres long, 80 tonnes bollard-pull tugs – similar to those currently under construction for the Gorgon project – will be delivered to Wheatstone. And the project will provide onshore and offshore jobs for 35 new SVITZER colleagues. 

“The Wheatstone win is a testament to the great work which is being carried out in the implementation of the Gorgon LNG project,” says Kasper. Consisting of two LNG trains with a combined capacity of 8.9 million tonnes per year and a domestic gas plant, the Wheatstone project will secure both employment and revenue for Australia for many years to come, reinforcing the country’s position as a leading LNG suppler in the Asia-Pacific region. 

Kasper believes that the main reason for Chevron to award SVITZER the contract is the reliability of services we provide: “Our solution is innovative, and we provide great backup capabilities both in terms of crew and vessels and have the size to take on multiple large-scale projects. The fact that the implementation of the Gorgon project is on track provides certainty that the Wheatstone project will start up on time. I also believe that the work that has been carried out in the Angola LNG terminal, where Chevron owns a large share, shows that we are capable of implementing and performing complex marine services,” he concludes. 

Mark Malone, Managing Director, SVITZER Australasia adds: “There is an exciting pipeline of opportunities down here on both the harbour towage and LNG fronts, and we are gearing our organisation to win them,” he says. 

“With strong backing and a further chance to strengthen our record of reliable service deliveries under Australian conditions, Wheatstone actually boosts our potential for additional projects of a similar scale.” LNG contract in Australia A tremendous win Winning the Wheatstone terminal towage contract shows confidence in SVITZER as the preferred towage provider in the global LNG terminal market. The eco-friendly solution SVITZER’s position as first-mover in supplying environmentally friendly tugs also played a key role in the negotiations. Since Wheatstone is set in an environmentally sensitive area, the Australian Government requires Chevron to meet strict environmental conditions. An ambitious environmental package, including a four-year plan to improve critical habitats for humpback whales, dugongs and snubfin dolphins in the surrounding waters, is but one of the governmental requirements. 

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THE ECO-FRIENDLY SOLUTION

SVITZER’s position as first-mover in supplying environmentally friendly tugs also played a key role in the negotiations. Since Wheatstone is set in an environmentally sensitive area, the Australian Government requires Chevron to meet strict environmental conditions. An ambitious environmental package, including a four-year plan to improve critical habitats for humpback whales, dugongs and snubfin dolphins in the surrounding waters, is but one of the governmental requirements.