A multifunctional modular seabed trencher developed by a Chinese company recently completed the construction of 100 kilometers of pipelines under Bangladesh’s first marine pipeline project under the Belt and Road Initiative, setting two world drilling records directional and deep trenches like world times Reported.
Bangladesh launched the Single-point Mooring with Double Pipelines project under the flagship Belt and Road Initiative during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Bangladesh in 2016 as part of development cooperation.
This was one of the priority projects of the Energy Division, as the project will significantly reduce fuel transportation costs along with time. A “single mooring point with double pipeline” – is a loading buoy anchored offshore, which serves as a mooring and interconnection point for tankers loading or unloading gas or liquid products.
The project was undertaken by the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) to transport imported crude oil to the state-owned Eastern Refinery Limited (ERL) at Moheshkhali, Cox’s Bazar, Chattogram.
In December 2016, BPC entered into an agreement with China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Company (CPP) for the engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning for the installation of a single berth with dual pipelines 220 kilometers long, including the construction of a 146 kilometer long offshore pipeline and a 74 kilometer long onshore pipeline to transport imported oil from the sea to a refinery in the Chattogram district.
The Single Point Mooring (SPM) facility with dual pipeline is being implemented with Chinese concessional loan approximately $554 million. Of the total loan amount, China is providing $467.84 million as a preferential purchase credit and the remaining $82.5 million as a concessional loan. The Exim Bank of China provides the money to be repaid within 20 years at an interest rate of 2.0% per annum with a grace period of five years. The project is expected to be completed by June 30, 2023.
Currently, large vessels carrying crude oil are anchored on the high seas and, due to the poor seaworthiness from the critical channel, the state-owned BPC uses lightweight vessels to transport imported crude oil to the state-owned Eastern Refinery Limited (ERL) at Chattogram, which is both time-consuming and costly.
Explaining the need for the project, Bangladesh’s State Minister for Energy and Power said it will help save Tk 1,000 crore ($106 million) per year as it will not be needed to use lighter ships to transport crude oil.
When completed, the SPM (Single Point Mooring) will have an annual unloading capacity of 9 million. It will be able to unload 120,000 tons of crude oil in 48 hours and 70,000 tons of diesel in 28 hours will easily unload imported crude oil and finished products from 100,000 DWT (Deadweight) tankers in 72 hours, which now takes 11 days for unloading.
Officials said the SPM project will have supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and a communication system and also includes the construction of three crude oil tanks (each with a net capacity of 50,000 m³) , three HSD tanks (each with a net capacity of 30,000 m³), main pumps, booster pumps and other pumps, installation of a generator for power supply, accommodation, administrative buildings and others, scraping system, counting system, security system and fire fighting system.
Bangladesh Navy and Coal Power Generation Bangladesh Limited, which is building a coal-fired power station in the region, has requested to move the pipelines about 6-8 meters deep under the sea for safer navigation in the coastal region. Which was very difficult. Usually, the depth of buried offshore pipelines is 1.5-3 meters, reaching 5 meters below the seabed, which is already a very difficult task.
China-developed, unbeatable multi-pulse high-power accelerator, “Shenlong-3” used to bring the depth reached to an unprecedented 11 meters for the 146 kilometer offshore pipeline to cross the sea lanes, which is a world record. The seabed trencher was self-developed by the state-owned China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Co (CPP), which is a professional company specializing in the construction of oil and gas storage and transportation infrastructure, under the aegis of the China National Petroleum Corporation.
Energy security is extremely critical for Bangladesh, which is on track to become a developed country by 2041 and to graduate from LCD by 2026. To provide sufficient safe storage and uninterrupted supply in the most cost-effective way any By fueling its booming economy, Bangladesh will achieve this goal by implementing benefit from a unique berthing project with two pipelines thus ensuring energy security.
Saifan Shakhaoat is a freelance breeder and writer based in Bangladesh.