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Wafra project - 92 km pipeline tender expected to be out soon
2005 June 2

  The Ministry of Public Works is expected to issue in the near future a tender for the third package of Wafra water distribution contract, covering the supply and installation of a 1.6-metre-diameter, 92-kilometre-long main pipeline from the data monitoring centre at Sulaibiya to Wafra, is expected to be issued soon. 

Kuwaiti United Gulf Construction Company was low bidder at US$205 million for the original tender when prices were opened in july 2004. The tender was cancelled after disagreements over whether the main pipeline should be made from ductile iron or steel. A team of the USí Parsons Engineering Corporation with the local Gulf Consult is the consultant for the project.

Hyundai Engineering wins $397m Kuwait ethane recovery plant order
2005 March 26

  South Korea's Hyundai Construction & Engineering said it had won a $397 million order to build an ethane recovery plant in Kuwait. The order was placed by Kuwait National Petroleum Company with completion due for September, 2007, Hyundai said in a statement. 

'Advanced technology in building gas processing plants is helping the company garner orders in the Middle East, an area expected to be a main source of overseas orders,' the firm said in the statement. 

The company also said it was targeting $2 billion in overseas orders this year.

World surge of steel prices will reflect on Kuwait
2005 March 14

  Prices of steel crude and steel products -- key industrial materials -- have been surging worldwide on the heels of a recent agreement between top list producers and manufacturers, and this would reflect on reinforced steel prices in Kuwait starting next April, chairman of the United Steel Industries Company (USIC) Awad Al-Khaldi said on Sunday.

In an interview, Khaldi said the recent world agreement among world producers and manufacturers stipulated push up of crude steel by 71.5 percent or up to USD 80 per ton. This ultimately means hike of reinforced steel price by KD 10-12 per ton over the current KD 138.

He said other factors end up in pushing up steel prices including continued rise of oil prices that in turn raise production cost which is charged to the end consumer.

The Brazilian Companhia Vale Do Rio Doce (CVRD) and the Japanese Nippon Corp, the biggest crude steel producers, have recently agreed on raise of prices with the Manufacturers Federation in Germany and Japan that are top importers of crude steel. He said still USIC reinforced steel products are the lowest in the region. As an example the Saudi citizen in Hafr 

Al-Baten and Khafji that are close to Kuwait is paying KD 150 per ton while the Kuwaiti citizen is paying KD 138. He said USIC production capacity is currently 600,000 tons per annum adding that this fulfils domestic demand and part of it is exported to the GCC member states.

He predicted 20 percent rise in demand for steel in the coming two or three years due to the ambitious plan adopted by Minister of Public Works Badr Al-Hmeidi.

He said the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has allowed his company to export 150,000 tons of steel per annum to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. But he criticized the recent Customs Department decision to impose an additional tax based on an agreement with a private sector company working according to the BOT (Build, Operate and Transfer) system. Regarding steel products, the price of hot-rolled steel sheet has been rising rapidly, with that made by domestic blast-furnace steelmakers for export to Asian countries trading at USD 500-550 per ton on an FOB (free on board) basis, up 30-40 percent from the beginning of this year.

Growing demand for steel products in Asia is the result of strong demand from the regional construction, household appliance and industrial machinery sectors. Steel users are increasingly turning to Japanese steelmakers for supply. Also prices of new vessels are surging amid growing demand for ocean transport and rising steel material prices, with the price of a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker soaring to a five-year high of roughly USD 200 million. 

Hyundai Heavy wins $1.1 billion ship building orders from Kuwait and Iran
2005 March 5

Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world's top shipbuilder, said on Friday it had won combined orders worth $1.1 billion from Kuwait and Iran to build container ships. Hyundai's deal came after media reports that the top three Korean shipyards had won long-term contracts from the Middle East for a combined $10 billion to build lucrative liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers.

Second-ranked Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering and Samsung Heavy Industries said they would disclose the details of other deals once they were signed.

Korean shipbuilders have enjoyed a boom in ship orders as a result of soaring demand for LNG, driven by energy-guzzling China and India, and falling gas output in the U.S. and Europe.

Despite a surge in orders, Hyundai and other Korean shipbuilders have suffered from a rising won and higher steel prices that have gnawed at their bottom line.

Hyundai Heavy would deliver eight container ships worth 851.1 billion won ($846 million) to United Arab Shipping of Kuwait and two container ships to Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines by 2008, it said in a statement.

Hyundai said it had secured orders for 39 ships worth $3.7 billion this year, achieving 67 percent of its $5.5 billion target.

In separate deals announced on Friday, Hanjin Heavy Industries Co. said it had won a 412.7 billion-won order from an Iranian company to build four container ships.

Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Co. also said it had won orders worth a combined 137.3 billion won from Liberia to build two container ships.

Hyundai shares closed up 2.7 percent at 53,500 won, outperforming a 0.2 percent gain in the broader market.

Hanjin Heavy shares rose 6.32 percent at 14,300 won, while Hyundai Mipo Dockyard shares rose 1.31 percent at 54,300 won. Last month, a joint venture between the Qatar Gas Transport Company Limited (Nakilat) and Overseas Shipholding Group, along with the Qatar Liquefied gas Company Limited (II), made a $900 million agreement with Hyundai Heavy and Samsung Heavy Industries to purchase and time charter four 216,000 cubic meter large Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) vessels.
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