Singapore has become one of the most important shipping centers in Asia and is one of the world’s top three oil trading and refining hubs. Singapore has a total crude oil refining capacity of more than 1.35 million barrels per day (bbl/d). Its three main refineries are ExxonMobil’s 625,000-bbl/d refinery at Pulau Ayer Chawan, Royal Dutch/Shell’s 465,000-bbl/d refinery on Pulau Bukom and the Singapore Refining Company’s (SRC) 275,000-bbl/d refinery on Pulau Merlimau. Recently, Singapore embarked on a diversification strategy for gas imports by building a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal.
In 2007, both ExxonMobil and Shell commenced construction of new hydrocrackers which have a combined worth of more than US$7 billion. These new facilities will bring Singapore’s total ethylene capacity to more than four million metric tons per annum. In 2006 Singapore approved the development of storage facilities in underground rock caverns with a potential capacity of up to 20.1 million barrels. These caverns, to be ready from 2012, will store petroleum liquids and products such as naptha and gasoil.
Singapore holds the No. 1 position, with 70% market share, for floating production, storage and offloading (FPSOs) conversions and 70% market share for jack-up rigs. In recent years, output from the oil & gas and petrochemical industries here was valued at close to US$40 billion especially with the high oil prices. However, oil prices have dropped by more than US$100 from six months ago and are expected to increase only slightly in the coming months due to the current financial crisis. As a result, a number of projects have been postponed or re-financed.
Singapore offers many opportunities for American companies including:
-Engineering firms, construction and contracting services / project consultancies, drilling contractors, offshore platform and rig fabricators and operators, shipbuilding and marine engineering
-Transportation equipment, storage and handling
-Pipeline technology including pumps, valves and compressors
-Expertise in conducting geographical surveys, navigation and positioning, hydrographic surveys and underwater inspection services, Metocean measurement, consultancy, information systems and marine forecasting.
-Supply of equipment and spares for upstream and downstream oil and gas, shipbuilding, marine, mechanical and electrical construction, oxidation additives, wastewater treatment and control systems
-Propriety equipment for deep water application and handling tools, hammer leads, casing tongs and computers (hardware / software)
-Oilfield equipment that include mud coolers, instrumentation such as drilling information systems, drilling monitors, mud logging units, mud monitoring systems, torque gauges, pressure gauges, weight indicators, deadline anchors, valves / actuators, performance testing and design control system
-Supply of tubular products such as casings, tubing, carbon steel line pipes, drill pipes, heavy wall pipes, drill collars, drill stem tubular accessories and mechanical alloy steel tubes.
Singapore is also experimenting with various forms of alternative energy such as solar, fuel cells, biodiesel and even hydrogen / natural gas hybrid for vehicles. The Singapore Government introduced a Green Vehicle Rebate in October 2006 to encourage owners of private vehicles to use CNG as well.
Plans for the construction of the underground oil storage facility are also under way. The initial phase of construction, involving 20 meter diameter vertical access shafts that stretch 90 meters below ground level, is expected to be completed in three years time while the second phase is already on the drawing board. The LNG terminal, which is scheduled to start operations in 2012, will add another 400 million standard cubic feet (mscf) capacity to the current 1.2 billion mscf daily supply of piped gas imports.