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Live From SMEM 2014
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Jason French

Dammam Shipyard sees 75% growth in 2014

Offshore vessel repairer and rig refurbisher Dammam Shipyard expects to see 75% growth this year, as it provides facilities to owners operating offshore Saudi east coast, and Saudi Aramco, owner of all oil and gas exploration and production in the kingdom, beefs up offshore oil production.

“We have seen a 75% increase in volumes in 2014 compared to last year. Our market is rigs and all vessels, especially AHTS, PSVs and OSVs,” Jason French, ceo, Dammam Shipyard, told Seatrade Global. “Our market is very much in Gulf waters. Some 20% of [Saudi] Aramco’s production is offshore.”

Located close to the causeway connecting the kingdom with Bahrain, Dammam Shipyard enables owners to repair vessels, jack-up rigs or drilling platforms without leaving Saudi Arabian waters. It is a member of the Saudi Al Balagha Group, which also owns the Jeddah Shipyard on the Saudi west coast.

The Dammam yard has two International Association of Classification Societies (IACS)-class floating docks. The yard's Dock 1 has an overall length of 215 m with a 22,000 tonne lifting capacity while Dock 2 is 165m with a 10,000 tonne lifting capacity. Both docks are 35m wide.

Dammam Shipyard’s clients are among some of the most well-known names in the international offshore industry, including rig contractors Ensco and Seadrill, both of the UK, and the US’ Rowan Companies, and offshore vessel operators Canada’s Tidewater, National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri), and Qatar’s Halul Offshore.

Al Balagha Group also runs a number of Jeddah-based projects through Jeddah Islamic Port's AA Turki Group (ATCO) berth and the King Faisal Naval Base in conjunction with Saudi Aramco, and Coastguard Royal Saudi Naval Forces. Dammam Shipyard has also carried out single point mooring systems work for Saudi Aramco’s marine operations.

Saudi Aramco says it is expanding drilling operations on a “scale unprecedented in our history,” and this is also likely to involve an intensification of deepwater Red Sea operations.

French said Jeddah Shipyard, also owned by the Al Balagha Group, involved more of a mobile engineering team focus that concentrates on offshore activities based around Jeddah, Rabigh, Jizan and Dhiba, but hoped that new larger premises could be found for the group’s operations.

“With Jeddah, we are hoping to take on more workshop work, and to expand into larger facilities,” French said. “Obviously Western Province is a key expansion area. We are open to all options [for an expanded base], be it Jizan, Jeddah or Rabigh. There are a lot of exciting opportunities.”

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