BW Offshore Agrees Extensions for Two FPSOs in Africa as Divestment Talks Continue

Espoir Ivorien ©BW Offshore (File image)
Espoir Ivorien ©BW Offshore (File image)

Norwegian FPSO vessel owner BW Offshore has recently secured short contract extensions for two of its FPSOs operating in Africa.

On Friday, BW Offshore said it had signed a short-term extension for the lease and operation of the FPSO Espoir Ivoirien, operating in Ivory Coast for CNR International, to discuss a potential purchase of the FPSO by the client. The firm period has been extended until June 9, 2023.

The FPSO, operating on the Espoir field offshore the Ivory Coast since 2002, has an oil processing capacity of 45,000 bbl/d and a gas handling capacity of 80 mmscfd. It can store 1,100,000 barrels.

Before this, on May 31, BW Offshore said it had secured a short-term contract extension for Abo FPSO with Nigerian Agip Exploration Ltd, a subsidiary of ENI S.p.A., until June 30, 2023. The company has previously said its divestment negotiations were ongoing for the FPSO.

The ABO FPSO started producing in April 2003. Keppel converted it from the 1976-built single-hull Suezmax tanker Grey Warrior, which was previously owned by Prosafe.

WER database shows that the FPSO has an oil production capacity of 44,000 b/d, a gas handling capacity of 44 mmcf/d, and can store 930,000 bbls. The vessel is spread-moored in a water depth of 500 meters. BW Offshore said in late February it was engaged in divestment negotiations for the Abo FPSO.

The two FPSOs are part of BW Offshore's ongoing asset divestment program for the non-core FPSOs. BW Offshore recently said its non-core asset divestment program was "expected to be completed in 2023 in  line with strategy,  reducing the operational risks associated with the conventional units and strengthening the balance sheet."

The company in April said it had sold the BW Athena FPSO to an undisclosed third party. The FPSO was in layup before the sale.

In March, BW Offshore closed the transaction for the sale of the FPSO BW Opportunity for $125 million to an undisclosed third party.

The BW Opportunity was previously known as Cidade de Sao Mateus FPSO. The FPSO was involved in an explosion in February 2015, in which nine workers were killed and 26 others injured, offshore Brazil.

Besides the Espoir Ivoirien and Abo FPSOs,  BW Offshore is working to divest the Sendje Berge FPSO, too.

In its quarterly presentation in May, BW Offshore said that the recycling of Petróleo Nautipa FPSO was expected late in 2023, and the sale of FPSO Polvo to BW Energy was planned to be completed in the first half of 2024.

BW Offshore's core FPSO projects include the Barossa FPSO being built for Santos in Australia, BW Adolo, which produces oil for BW Energy in Gabon, BW Catcher, which is on a contract with Harbour Energy in the UK North Sea, and BW Pioneer on a contract with Murphy Oil Corporation in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

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