Saudi Arabia Review 2017

Saudis target first shale

Saudi Aramco aims to begin production at a shale gas project in the north of Saudi Arabia this year, contractors based in the kingdom say.

The shale revolution in North America has been a thorn in the Saudis’ side, unleashing a new source of oil supply that has chipped away at Aramco’s global market share. But the unconventional resource could be beneficial to the company’s domestic market, providing welcome feedstock for the Saudi power sector.

Aramco late last year awarded Canada’s SNC Lavalin the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for the second phase of the shale project in the Northern Borders province near Jordan.

Known as System B, the phase is designed to add 200 million cubic feet per day, or 2 billion cubic meters per year, of gas production capacity. The first phase, System A, which has a production capacity of around 70 mmcfd, was awarded to Japan’s JGC Corp, sources say, and first gas is planned to be on line by end-2017.Aramco is really pushing to get this project done on time — it’s one of the priorities for them to increase gas production.

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