West Azeri Topsides Installed Offshore

23 September 2005

The Azerbaijan International Operating Company (AIOC) is pleased to announce that the topsides of the West Azeri Production, Drilling and Quarters Platform (WA PDQ) sailed away successfully on September 21 and were safely installed offshore onto the jacket yesterday (September 22) evening. This follows the load out of the 15,850 tonne topsides onto the transportation barge STB-1 from the Baku Deepwater Topsides Factory (BDJF) yard on 15 September.

The parties to the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) Production Sharing Agreement are: BP (operator - 34.1%), Unocal (10.3%), SOCAR (10%), INPEX (10.,0%), Statoil (8,6%), ExxonMobil (8%), TPAO (6.8%), Devon (5.6%), Itochu (3.9%), Amerada Hess (2.7%).

The WA platform is located at 120m water depth on the west side of Azeri Field. The jacket of the WA PDQ platform was installed offshore in May 2005. First Oil from WA is planned to be achieved in January 2006 following completion of topsides offshore hook up and commissioning activities. This will increase the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli offshore facilities oil production capacity by 340,000 barrels per day.

Bruce Luberski, BP’s Vice-President, ACG Project, says: “We continue to achieve milestones we committed for this year. We completed onshore fabrication of Compression and Water Injection Platform (C&WP) topsides earlier in July and installed them offshore. Currently C&WP topsides offshore commissioning continues to target plan. The WA PDQ is the second production platform we installed offshore following Central Azeri. I would like to thank every member of the team and our contractors for their safety commitment and personal dedication to the project. “

Note to Editors:
The ACG Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) signed in September 1994, covers the 30 year development of the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli (ACG) contract area. It is estimated that 5.4 billion barrels of oil will be recovered during that period. The field is being developed in several phases: Chirag has been producing since 1997 as part of the Early Oil Project (EOP). This was followed by Azeri Project Phase 1 - Central Azeri production, which started on February 13, 2005. Successive phases include West Azeri and East Azeri as Azeri Project Phase 2, scheduled to come on stream in 2006 and 2007 respectively, with ACG phase 3 - Deepwater Gunashli, sanctioned on September 20, 2004, and expected to begin production in 2008.


Further information:
Tamam Bayatly at BP’s Press Office in Baku, telephone: 994 (0) 12 599 4557