Nakilat-Keppel Offshore & Marine (N-KOM) has secured a contract from Gulf Drilling International (GDI) to develop a self-propelled and self-elevating liftboat.
The joint venture company also received a six-year contract for repair and maintenance services on GDI's existing jack up rigs in the Middle East. The total value of the contracts is worth $110m.
The LB310-design liftboat, which will be the fourth vessel in GDI's fleet, will be designed to operate at depths of up to 65m for field transit operations in the Middle East and North Africa regions.
With a capacity to accommodate 130 people, the vessel will feature two deck cranes, an open deck space of around 800m² and a helideck. It is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2015.
The liftboat is intended to offer accommodation and platform support services for GDI's customer in Qatar, according to N-KOM.
GDI chief executive officer Ibrahim Al Othman said: "GDI is pleased to sign this contract with N-KOM for the construction of their first liftboat.
"It will add to our growing fleet of quality rigs, which N-KOM will also be maintaining for us. We look forward to receiving a 'best-in-class' liftboat on the scheduled delivery date."
Qatar Minister of Energy and Industry Mohammed Bin Saleh Al Sada said: "Today marks an important milestone in the development of the State of Qatar's offshore industry with placing the order for the first built-in-Qatar liftboat.
"It also highlights the impressive growth of our offshore industry and of the Erhama Bin Jaber Al Jalahma Shipyard."
N-KOM is a joint venture between Qatar's shipping firm Nakilat and Keppel Offshore & Marine. It offers repair, conversion and maintenance and fabrication services for marine vessels, offshore and onshore structures.
Image: Officials during contract signing. Photo: courtesy of Nakilat - Keppel Offshore and Marine Ltd.