ERL picks German firm to help build floating platform

http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/more.php?news_id=129973&date=2011-03-21

ERL picks German firm to help build floating platform
Jasim Uddin Haroon

The government has taken a move to build a floating platform in the mid-sea of the Bay of Bengal to allow oil tankers to unload crude and petroleum products in an effort to cut soaring cost of oil handling and speed up fuel import.

The Eastern Refinery Limited, the lone state-owned refiner, is set to appoint a German consulting firm later this month to help design, locate and formulate the project for the country’s first Single Point Mooring (SPM) in the Bay.

ERL officials said the firm, ILF, has been primarily selected as the consultant for the project and its appointment will be formalised after a Cabinet committee approves its selection later this week.

“We hope the Cabinet purchase committee will approve our selection this week. Once we get the nod, we want to sign a final agreement with the ILF by next week,” ERL managing director Rezaul Alam told the FE Sunday.

The firm will charge Taka 700 million as fees for its work. The construction of the SPM may cost at least US$200 million — to be financed jointly by the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and the Government of Bangladesh (GoB).

ERL officials said the SPM will take two years to construct. They have primarily selected the area around the Kutubdia island — situated 70 kilometres west of Chittagong port — for possible site of the platform.

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