SINGLE POINT MOORING WITHOUT BIDDING: Officials to go abroad to evaluate contractor’s capability

Manjurul Ahsan

The energy and mineral resources division will send a team of its officials Angola and Abu Dhabi to evaluate the capabilities of the contractor appointed for the implementation of Single Point Mooring project and the cost of similar job.
The foreign trip might not be needed if the project was implemented through competitive bidding, said officials.
The division sent a letter to Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation saying that that the team would prepare a report after examining single point moorings installed by China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Corporation in Angola and Abu Dhabi.
The report will also include a comparative study on the costs of those single point moorings, the letter said.
The energy division will send the report to the cabinet committee on government purchase
with the proposed contract with the Chinese corporation for approval, the officials said.
The project aimed at facilitating state-run Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation to transport 4.5 million tonnes of crude oil and 1.5 million tonnes of diesel a year through two pipelines directly from mother vessels in deep sea to its onshore storages.
Energy expert M Tamim, also petroleum engineering professor at Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, said that the government had not save time by awarding the contract without bidding.
Rather it would pave the way for corruption and escalation of project cost, he said.
In 2012, the government took the project in Annual Development Programme.
In December 2015, the government in principle approved the unsolicited proposal for the Installation of single point mooring with double pipeline under the Speedy Supply of Power and Energy (Special Provisions) Act 2010.
On July 12, 2016, the energy division along with petroleum corporation and the Chinese corporation finalised the cost of the project at $550 million through negotiations, the officials said.
The project includes a floating jetty in the deep sea near Maheshkhali Island, a tank farm, power plant and pump at the island and installation of two 220km submarine pipelines from the jetty to storages at Anwara in Chittagong.
The project, once implemented, is expected to reduce the fuel unloading time to approximately two days from 11 days to empty a 100,000 tonne deadweight tanker. It would also enable the authorities concerned to stop spillage and pilferage of oil, the officials said.
The freight cost for crude and diesel would be minimised as well as the loss during loading-unloading activities from mother vessel to lighterages and again from the lighterages to onshore storages, they said.
The petroleum corporation now imports some 1.3 million tonnes of crude oil and over 3 million tonnes of diesel a year.
Eastern Refinery Limited, a subsidiary of the corporation, has a capacity for refining some 1.5 million tonnes of crude a year, which will be increased to 4.5 million tonnes under another project.

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