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November 22, 2010

OSX Brasil buys Vela VLCC's for FPSO conversion

OSX Brasil S.A., the offshore services unit of Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista's EMX empire, continues to forge ahead with its operations.

Among recent developments have been a $54 million agreement to buy two sister VLCC's from Saudi Aramco's Vela International Marine. The ships, built in 1994 and 1995, will be delivered to an OSX subsidiary in February and March 2011 for conversion into OSX's third and fourth FPSO's (floating storage, production and offloading units). The OSX-1 FPSO is currently under conversion at Keppel and is aimed to be operational offshore Brazil next year. Bids for the OSX-2 FPSO conversion are being evaluated and the contract is expected to be awarded in the first quarter of 2011. That unit will have a production capacity of 100,000 bbl/day.

Meanwhile, OSX has ambitious shipyard plans of its own. It has a technical agreement with Korea's Hyundai Heavy Industries which has taken a 10 per cent stake in shipbuilding subsidiary OSX Construcao Naval S.A.(formerly OSX Estaleiros). Initially it was reported that the yard would be a $1 billion facility at a site in Biguacu, in Brazil's of Santa Catarina. Now, OSX is looking at alternative uses for that site as it has taken the decision to site the shipyard (Unidade de Construcao Naval) at the Port of Acu Industrial Complex in the municipality of Sao Joao da Barra, State of Rio de Janeiro.

OSX expects to get the required environmental licenses from the State of Rio de Janeiro in April 2011.

It says the decision to locate the shipyard in Acu is based on the competitive advantages of the site.

UCN Acu will have a quay length of 2,400 m (approximately 70 percent longer than projected for Biguacu), with expansion capacity to reach 3,525 m. It will be be able to offer a broader range of services, including repairs and offers logistics synergies with other projects that are being established at the Port of Acu, particularly the Acu Private Use Port Terminal, steel mills, a thermoelectric plant and metal-mechanics complex.


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