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Nigerian Bound Bonga Hailed a Major Success for AMEC
Wallsend, United Kingdom (20 October 2003)- The Bonga Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel yesterday left AMEC’s integration facility at Wallsend, United Kingdom, after 10 months of engineering work and the installation of 22,500 tonnes of topsides oil and gas processing equipment.

AMEC was awarded the £300 million Engineering Procurement Construction contract by Shell in early 2001 and has carried out the project management, engineering design, fabrication and integration of the complex production facilities to produce one of the world’s largest FPSOs. AMEC’s contract also includes hook-up and pre-commissioning of the facility which will take place when it arrives at its operational location in the Bonga oil and gas field 120 kilometres off the coast of Nigeria.

The FPSO, operated by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited on behalf of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, measures over 300 metres long, 75 metres wide and 33 metres tall. When operational in 2004 the Bonga FPSO will extract and process up to 225,000 barrels of oil a day and store up to 2 million barrels of oil. It will also have a gas export facility of 150 million standard cubic feet per day.

The project sets a new benchmark in the production of FPSOs for deep water operation, with the facility reaching an unprecedented level of completion on departure from Wallsend. Over 2,500 people were involved in Bonga at the peak of activity at the AMEC facility, with many ancillary jobs also being created in the Tyneside region.

AMEC, the international engineering services company, provides design, project delivery and maintenance support to clients in the oil and gas, transport, industrial and infrastructure sectors.

The company generates annual revenues of approximately £5bn and works at the local, national and international levels, employing some 45,000 people throughout the UK, continental Europe, the Americas and 40 countries worldwide.

AMEC’s services to the international energy, oil and gas industry currently account for approximately 25 per cent of its revenues. The company is a long-term supplier of services to the leading international oil and gas producers, with its upstream, downstream and pipeline activities reaching across six continents. The company is one of the few international engineering services firms with the experience and facilities to undertake a project as large and complex as Bonga. AMEC has built up world-wide expertise on over 20 FPSOs, ranging from front-end engineering design to fabrication and maintenance services. Other recent FPSO work includes the ExxonMobil Kizomba A and B facilities intended for offshore Angola.

Notes to Editors:
Photos of Bonga will be available on AMEC’s ‘picture library’ at

Bonga Factsheet

Bonga FPSO

  • The Bonga FPSO is one of the largest vessels of its type in the world and the largest ever to enter the Tyne.
  • The topside of the FPSO was fabricated at AMEC in Wallsend and other locations in Europe and Nigeria. The integration of the topsides and the hull was completed at Wallsend.
  • Topsides are facilities for processing oil, water and gas. Some 22,000 tonnes of equipment including the topsides were installed on the Bonga at Wallsend.
  • Once Bonga leaves the Tyne it will sail to its permanent mooring at the Bonga field, 120km off the coast of Nigeria. The journey will take approximately 6 weeks.


  • Bonga is 300 metres long, 75 metres wide (including the helideck) and the height of a 12-storey building.
  • Bonga’s hull had a lightship weight of 47,200 tonnes when it arrived at Wallsend. It now weighs 90,000 tonnes. The increase is in stores, water, fuel and the topsides.
  • Bonga’s deadweight (when she has a full cargo) will be 312,500 tonnes.

The field·

  • Bonga is a giant oil and gas field, 120 kilometres off the coast of the Niger Delta, covering an area of 60 square kilometres.
  • The field was discovered in 1996 by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo).
  • SNEPCo operates the field on behalf of the licence holder Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
  • The water depth varies from 1,000 to 1,100 metres.
  • The field consists of multiple reservoirs in unconsolidated sands.
  • The project is expected to increase Nigeria’s crude oil reserves by some 600 million barrels.
  • Full field development will cost some US$ 2.7 billion.
  • Bonga is a significant component of Shell’s US$8.5 billion medium term integrated oil and gas investment programme in Nigeria.
  • Shell’s investment in Bonga is a further demonstration of its commitment to assist Nigeria in increasing daily oil production from 2 million barrels to 4 million barrels by 2010.


  • Gas from Bonga will be piped to the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) plant at Bonny Island.
  • A third gas processing train is being constructed and LNG will be exported to the Atlantic and European markets.
  • First oil is expected in the first half of 2004.
The partners
The license is operated by SNEPCo in joint venture with Esso Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited (20%), Elf Petroleum Nigeria Limited (12.5%), and Nigerian Agip Exploration Limited (12.5%).

Some 70 Nigerian nationals, including government staff, are already in training to operate the facilities over the 20-year life of the field.


Frank Stokes – mob.: 07712 008356, office: +44 (0)1789 208477, e-mail:

Nick Welsh – mob.: 07770 832838, office +44 (0)20 7634 0024, email:

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