US$100M marine port facility for Suriname as oil discoveries surge offshore

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Shikema Dey
Experienced Journalist with a demonstrated history of working in the media production industry and a keen interest in oil and gas, energy, public infrastructure, agriculture, social issues, development and the environment.

Increased deepwater action offshore Suriname has created a need for large port facilities to service the nation’s expanding oil and gas industry.

Three companies; the Emirati-based DP World, HJ de Vries Project Development N.V. and FIRM Engineering N.V. have partnered to fill that gap with the creation of a mega marine facility, located on the East Bank of the Suriname River.

FIRM Engineering N.V. gave the public a sneak peek of the project at the recently concluded Suriname Energy, Oil and Gas Summit (SEOGS) 2022 held in Paramaribo. One of its Civil Engineers, Daniël Falix told OilNOW that the mega facility will be stretched across 330 hectares of land with a 1,000-metre waterfront at Plantation Suzannasdaal.

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The main attraction will be the 50-hectares offshore support base; construction has = commenced and phase one is expected to be operational by mid-2023, Falix explained.

“And that is going to kickstart operations and see thousands of locals being employed,” the FIRM Civil Engineer noted.

In the initial stage of construction, Falix said three berths will be built but when the entire port is fully operationalised, it will be able to service a total of five offshore supply vessels simultaneously.

“Being close to the river mouth, the Suzannasdaal Support Base will be the nearest port to the Suriname offshore operations, like around 200 kilometers [km] from the current promising oil discoveries which will support fast supply from and to the projected oil rigs,” Falix shared.

Dredging of the Suriname River is also planned; a seven-meter draft is expected to be maintained. The berths will be built to allow heavy lifting of up to 150 metric tonnes.

The port will also feature, multiple liquid mud plants, warehouses, and workshops to store offshore equipment, a fuel terminal, a heliport, a waste management facility, and a water treatment facility along with a medical centre. The port will also have a private ferry service and a general port facility adjacent to the support base.

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The project is being led by DP World, the Emirati multinational company that specialises in cargo logistics, port terminal operations, maritime services and free trade zones.

DP World handles 70 million containers that are transported by around 70,000 vessels annually. This equates to roughly 10% of global container traffic accounted for by its 82 marine and inland terminals present in over 40 countries.

HJ de Vries Project Development N.V. and FIRM Engineering N.V. are both Surinamese companies.

The HJ Group started in 1903 by Henri Juriaan de Vries with a small trade shop that has evolved into a holding company with 14 subsidiaries.

FIRM Engineering on the other hand is said to be the first ISO 9001 certified multidisciplinary engineering group based in Suriname providing engineering and project management services to clients active in building and civil infrastructure, mining and metals, petrochemical, and power industry.


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