Kumul Petroleum Holdings Limited recently held a ground-breaking ceremony outside Port Moresby, near the LNG plant at Caution Bay. The event was for a new Steel, Mechanical, and Piping (SMP) module fabrication facility and also for a construction training academy.

Wapu Sonk, the managing director of Kumul Petroleum, said his company was establishing a world-class SMP Module fabrication facility as part of preparations for the development of LNG and mining in PNG. He said the new facility could manufacture infrastructure components needed by large-scale projects.

“We are pleased to be initiating this industrial plant since it is important that through this facility the country can demonstrate the real ability to maximise national content in major resource developments – through fabrication of core infrastructure components and training of competent Papua New Guinean tradesmen,” Mr Sonk said.

“The facility will be constructed on more than 60 hectares of land adjacent to the current LNG plant and close to Motukea international port. The facility will have two main production lines – for structural steel fabrication and pipeline & pipe spools fabrication, with separate module assembly areas.

“Kumul Petroleum will not be undertaking this huge industrial operation alone. To ensure a productive and assured operational ramp up of facility throughput and to minimise costs, schedule, and quality risk to major projects proponents, we have reached a preliminary agreement with Fabtech International, a world recognised fabrication facility operator that would see Fabtech take a leading role running the facility, in addition to other potential strategic partners to finance and own the facility,” Mr Sonk said.

“Once fully operational, the fabrication facility will be able to produce up to 20,000 tonnes of SMP Modules into the international, regional, and domestic PNG oil, gas and mining industry projects markets.”

Mr Sonk said that the facility’s construction would be done entirely by Papua New Guinean contractors and sub-contractors in the spirit of promoting national talent and skills.

The Kumul Construction Academy would be associated with the fabrication facility and would train ‘Job-Ready fabricators and constructors’ in a range of technical skills. The academy would produce skilled employees for the LNG, power, mining, oil, and gas industries.

Mr Sonk added, “The training to be provided will create opportunities for the next generation of Papua New Guineans to develop lifelong knowledge and practical skills for employment in PNG and internationally – in skilled and semi-skilled positions in a range of industries as PNG’s industrial and resource sectors develop in the coming years.”

Image caption: Group photograph of industry players with Prime Minister James Marape and Kumul Petroleum Managing Director Wapu Sonk at the Ground Breaking Ceremony of the Kumul Petroleum Fabrication and Training Facilities. (credit Kumul Petroleum)