Guyana dedicates first oil production vessel

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 Guyana Saturday dedicated its first oil production vessel as the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country moved closer to becoming an oil producing nation.

Lady Sandra Granger, wife of President David Granger, officially dedicated the “Liza Destiny” at a ceremony held at the Keppel Shipyard here underscoring the importance of the project and industry to Guyana’s future socio-economic development.

“I think it is a fitting name (Liza Destiny) … because we are talking about destiny, we are talking about the long-term and we are talking about vision – not only the production but also the process and what comes behind it.

“It is my hope that this ship will bring to us the people of Guyana, not only physical prosperity, but greater cohesion, greater development and of course the sustainability of our country, and its people and culture,” she said at the ceremony attended by the. Director of the Department of Energy, Dr. Mark Bynoe.

In keeping with tradition and naming protocols, the dedication is performed by a woman who is termed the “godmother of the vessel” to bestow good luck and divine protection over the ship and all who sail aboard.

Guyana is hoping to begin commercial oil production next year and President of the US-based ExxonMobil’s Upstream, Liam Mallon, acknowledged the correlation between the name of the floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel, the “Liza Destiny” and ExxonMobil’s intent to partner with the country over the long term.

“We are committed for a long voyage. We first signed an agreement to explore for hydrocarbons in the Stabroek block in 1999, we drilled the Liza well in May 2015, and this FPSO has been designed to produce oil for decades. It will provide value to Guyana and ExxonMobil for the long term. Our destinies, therefore, have been and will continue to be linked to Guyana in the future,” Mallon said.

He said that Liza Phase 1 is a global project with significant local participation as more than 1000 Guyanese are involved. This project involves completion of the FPSO and four subsea drill centres with 17 well.

The Liza Destiny FPSO was transformed from the oil tanker, “Tina”, a VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) built by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea. The contract for its conversion was awarded to SBM Offshore in July 2017. The vessel is due to set sail for Georgetown next month and the officials said that the final work is being completed and several checks performed over the next few weeks.

The Liza Destiny has a production capacity of up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day and an overall storage volume of 1.6 million barrels.

During normal operations, there will be at least 80 people living and working on board the vessel and 24 operations and maintenance technicians, who are currently being trained in Canada, will return in 2020 to support work on the Liza Destiny.

A government statement in Georgetown said that the vessel is designed to produce up to 120,000 barrels of oil per day and will have associated gas treatment capacity of approximately 170 million cubic feet per day and water injection capacity of around 200,000 barrels per day.

The converted VLCC FPSO will be moored in water with a depth of 1,525 meters and will be able to store 1.6 million barrels of crude oil.

It said that the Liza Destiny is expected to arrive in Guyana in September for the start of oil production for the Liza Phase 1 project in the Stabroek Block in early 2020.

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