Kuwaiti oil officials and Hyundai Engineering & Construction executives denied on October 18th that the South Korean company had lost out on a $326.5 million project to build a new oil export pier in Kuwait.
An official from the Kuwait National Petroleum Corp. (KNPC) said that: “It is not correct. We have not withdrawn the export pier contract from Hyundai. We have signed the deal and God willing we are proceeding with implementation.”
The Kuwaiti and South Korean officials were on the defensive after a Hyundai executive indicated that KNPC had changed its mind regarding its decision to award the deal to the Asian company.
In May, KNPC had invited bids for the engineering, procurement and construction of a new oil pier and topside facilities at its Mina al-Ahmadi refinery.
Hyundai placed the lowest bid of 100.5 million dinars ($326.5 million), with Australian engineering firm Clough Ltd. second at 105.4 million dinars ($342.4 million). O.S. Kwon, general manager of Hyundai in Kuwait, said on October 18th that: “Advance payment is currently being processed, so we are surprised. We have already finalized this with KNPC and the contract was signed.”
The manager added that a kick-off meeting had been held on October 8th and 9th and that a monthly progress meeting was to be held November 5th with KNPC in Korea. KNPC also indicated that it was in the process of signing an additional deal with the South Korean company for a calcined coke project. The new deal is reportedly worth nearly 30 million dinars ($97 million).