Gas project container sinks, work to delay
The wish of officials of the Ghana Gas Company to begin the commercial delivery of gas from the Atuabo Gas facility in January 2014 is not likely to be met.
This follows the loss of a container carrying a consignment, including 34 fabricated plates, valued at $2.6 million, for the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) storage tank, off the coast of South Africa.
The consignment, which also included some important accessories for the storage and condensing tank, is said to have sunk into the sea when the Chinese vessel, Senghuang Song, on which it was being transported, was involved in an accident as a result of bad weather.
Also in the missing container were some essential tools for the hooking up and installation of vessels to transport gas from the facility.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Gas, Dr George Sipah-Yankey, who confirmed this to the Daily Graphic, said the incident occurred on August 8, this year, when the vessel transporting the consignment on behalf of the contractors, Sinopec, to the Atuabo site was caught in the middle of bad weather off the shores of South Africa on its way to Ghana.
According to him, other items in a separate container on board the vessel also got damaged as a result.
“Luckily for us, Sinopec insured the consignment and has since notified its insurers, who are replacing the lost and damaged equipment. We are optimistic that by September 21 the raw plates would have arrived at Sinopec’s site in China for fabrication and subsequent shipment to Ghana,” Dr Yankey said.
The loss of the cargo, he said, would delay the completion of the entire project, although the mechanical completion date would still be in December this year.
“The new cargo being processed by Sinopec’s insurers can only arrive in the country in December and the erection and welding works will also take a period of 80 days to complete,” he said.
Dr Yankey further explained that although completion works on two of the four storage facilities had been slated for December, the other two could only be ready by March 2014.
“The mechanical completion of the two storage tanks will be in December but it will be unsafe to store gas in the system while welding and installation of the two other tanks continue on the site. We would not want to endanger the lives of people and the plants, so we may have to wait until March to start the transmission of gas,” he added.
By Della Russel Ocloo/Daily Graphic/Ghana