The ceremonial first cut of steel for the construction of the jackets on the Cygnus gas field project was celebrated today by operator GDF SUEZ E&P UK and partners Centrica Energy and Bayerngas at Burntisland Fabrication’s (BiFab) Methil yard in Fife, Scotland.
This latest project milestone involves BiFab’s manufacturing facilities at Methil, Burntisland and Arnish and is expected to create 100 new jobs at Methil and 15 apprentice positions will be created at Methil and Burntisland.
Lindsay Roy MP for Glenrothes & Central Fife and David Torrance MSP for Kirkcaldy witnessed the first cut of the steel, which will be used to build the jackets for all four platforms for the Cygnus field - the largest gas discovery in the Southern North Sea in the last 25 years.
After project sanction in August 2012, GDF SUEZ E&P UK placed a contract with BiFab’s Methil yard for the design and fabrication of the jackets, with the intent to place a future order for fabrication of the accommodation platform. Three jackets will be delivered in April 2014, with the fourth in April 2015. The BiFab contract covers the design, procurement and construction of the four jackets, completed with piles, with a total weight of approximately 8,000 tonnes.
Overall the Cygnus partnership is investing £1.4 billion (GBP) in the development of the Cygnus field which will create 4,000 direct and indirect jobs across the UK during the construction phase.
Lindsay Roy MP, said: “The award of this contract to BiFab is great news for Methil in creating new jobs and apprenticeships for the area, securing existing jobs until 2015, and retaining important skills. It is good to see that the Cygnus development is continuing to make a positive contribution to the UK energy industry and wider economy through the award of a high percentage of the construction contracts to UK based companies.”
David Torrance MSP, said: “The contract, which brings jobs and apprenticeships, is significant for the future and prosperity of the Methil area. This investment in the Cygnus project is also a testament to the skills and expertise that exist here. The oil and gas industry and the North Sea’s resources are very important for the region as a whole and the massive investment in the North Sea industries plays a vital part in the Scottish economy.”
Jean-Claude Perdigues, Managing Director of GDF SUEZ E&P UK said: “Today’s cutting of first steel for the Cygnus jackets marks another important project milestone, securing and creating jobs in Scotland for the next two years. GDF SUEZ E&P UK is pleased to be working with BiFab and employing the world-leading experience and skill that resides in Scotland for the design and fabrication of offshore structures.”
Greg McKenna, Southern North Sea Director, Centrica Energy Upstream, said: “Today represents the next step forward in developing the Cygnus project. This £1.4 billion investment is critical to unlocking the Southern North Sea basin, which enables us to secure gas for our UK customers along with jobs and apprenticeships in the local area.”
Gerry Harrison, Managing Director, Bayerngas UK Ltd commented: “As one of the partners in the Cygnus Field Development, we are very encouraged to see the start of construction work, right on schedule. We look forward to safe and timely delivery, so that installation can commence during 2014. It’s good to see the UK offshore construction industry looking competitive.”
John Robertson, Managing Director, Burntisland Fabrications said: “We are very pleased with our progress to date, everything is on schedule and there is a good working relationship between all companies involved in delivering the Cygnus Project on time and safely. The award of this project has allowed us to recruit 15 additional apprentices for our operations at Methil and Burntisland, and continue to grow as a major manufacturer of topsides and jackets for the North Sea energy sector.
The Cygnus Partnership is led by operator GDF SUEZ E&P UK Ltd (38.75%) with partners Centrica (48.75%) and Bayerngas (12.5%).