March 21 - Here is a round up of some of the most important developments in the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) sector from the past week.

According to a report published by Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, the UK's offshore wind sector could generate as much as GBP6.7 billion (USD11.14 billion) annually.
The Generating Energy and Prosperity: Economic Impact Study of the offshore renewable industry in the UK paper presents two scenarios based on a 'gradual growth' path of 8GW by 2020, which assumes similar market conditions to those that currently exist, and an 'accelerated growth' path of 15GW by 2020, which drives cost reduction and quality improvements through innovation and investment.
The report says that the accelerated growth path could deliver gross value added (GVA) to the UK economy of almost GBP6.7 billion (USD11.14 billion) in 2020, 34,000 direct jobs, and 150,000 jobs in total in the wider UK economy.
The Shah Deniz and South Caucasus Pipeline consortium has awarded key contracts for the development of the Shah Deniz Stage 2 and South Caucasus Pipeline Expansion (SCPX) projects - which will connect the Shah Deniz gas field in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea to Turkey.
Since the start of 2014, the USD528 million contract for the construction and commissioning support of the SCPX project facilities in Georgia has been awarded to the Bechtel Enka joint venture, while the USD174 million contract for pipeline and facilities engineering and project management services has been awarded to Chicago Bridge & Iron UK Limited (CB&I).
Wood Group Kenny Limited (WGK) has won the initial phase of the subsea and pipeline engineering and project management services, amounting to USD57 million, and EPC services for the offshore platform living quarters has been awarded to Apply Emtunga.
The contract for shaft and tunnel construction and line pipe installation for the two river crossings of the SCPX project (one in Azerbaijan and one in Georgia) has been awarded to CSM Bessac. This USD24 million contract is expected to complete in 2017.
Power and automation company ABB, alongside its consortium partner UK Power Networks (UKPN) has won a USD145 million contract from Network Rail to upgrade the UK's rail network, delivering more than 30 new traction substations. The contract represents the first sizable new electrification project to be undertaken by Network Rail in over 30 years and forms a key part of the Great Western Electrification Programme (GWEP), says ABB.
The European Investment Bank will contribute towards a number of infrastructure and power generation projects worldwide. Investments include: a GBP175 million (USD290.85 million) contribution towards the completion of a motorway link between Glasgow and Edinburgh; EUR200 million (USD278.2 million) to the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) to help finance projects in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in the country; a EUR100 million (USD139.11 million) loan to the Government of Pakistan for the construction of the Keyal Khwar hydropower project; a EUR205 million (USD285.18 million) loan has been allocated for the conversion of the El Shabab power station in Egypt to a combined-cycle gas power plant; wiles a EUR235 million (USD326.91 million) loan has been secured by the Greek Public Power Corporation to renovate and reinforce the country's electricity distribution network.
Furthermore, a banking consortium including the European Investment Bank, German KfW IPEX-Bank and Rabobank has agreed to provide EUR350 million (USD486.88 million) to NOP Agrowind for construction of 26 new wind turbines in the existing Windpark Noordoostpolder, which will make the Dutch onshore wind park the largest in Europe.
The Azimut Project - a research project between eleven Spanish companies and 22 research centers, coordinated by turbine manufacturer Gamesa - has completed its four-year study, concluding that a 15 MW wind turbine will be feasible by 2020.
Gamesa has also won two key contracts northeastern Brazil. It will supply, transport, install and commission 34 G97-2.0 MW turbines at the Companhia de Energias Renováveis-operated Assuruá II, Assuruá V and Assuruá VII wind farms. 15 turbines of the same model will be delivered to the Ventos dos Guarás I wind farm in the Morrinhos complex during the third quarter of 2015.
Renewable energy in sub-Saharan Africa has received a boost with the African Renewable Energy Fund (AREF) securing USD100 million of capital to support small to medium-scale independent power producers (IPPs). The fund, which will be headquartered in Nairobi, aims to secure USD200 million of investment within the next 12 months that will be invested in grid-connected development stage renewable energy projects including small hydro, wind, geothermal, solar, biomass and waste gas projects.

In merger news, oil and gas exploration firm BP has completed the acquisition of in PT Amoco Mitsui PTA Indonesia (AMI) from its joint venture partners Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. (MCI) and Mitsui & Co. Ltd. (MBK) (

For more information about any of these projects, or developments in your region, please contact David Kershaw.