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Baker Hughes to Support Strategic Gas Project in Algeria

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Picture of Anamika Talwaria

Anamika Talwaria

Editor & Head of Content for Tank Storage Magazine & StocExpo and Chair of Women in Tanks.

Energy technology company Baker Hughes has been awarded a major contract from Sonatrach for a gas-boosting project for the Hassi R’Mel gas field in Algeria. The contract is part of a broader order awarded to a consortium between Baker Hughes and Tecnimont, part of technology and engineering group MAIRE. The signing ceremony took place in Algiers in the presence of the three company CEOs: Rachid Hachichi of SONATRACH, Lorenzo Simonelli of Baker Hughes, and Alessandro Bernini of MAIRE, as well as H.E. Mohamed Arkab, Minister of Energy & Mines.

Left to right: Alessandro Bernini, CEO of MAIRE; Rachid Hachichi, CEO of SONATRACH; and Lorenzo Simonelli, Chairman and CEO of Baker Hughes

Baker Hughes’ awarded scope includes the supply of 20 compression trains based on Frame 5 gas turbine and BCL compressor technology, which will be installed across three gas boosting stations within the Hassi R’ Mel gas field. Located 550 km south of Algiers, Hassi R’ Mel is the largest gas field in Algeria and one of the largest in the world, representing a key source of energy supply for Algeria and Europe. Baker Hughes’ proven technology solutions are expected to play a central role in the project by boosting and stabilising the pressure of natural gas and increasing production at site, which will enhance Algeria’s domestic energy system and economy as well as Europe’s energy security.

‘Today’s announcement marks a notable milestone in our historical collaboration with SONATRACH for key energy projects in Algeria that have played a crucial role in supplying reliable energy to Europe,’ says Lorenzo Simonelli, chairman and CEO of Baker Hughes. ‘We have long believed that it is critical to increase gas within the overall global energy mix to help achieve a lower-carbon economy. This project helps to solve for energy producers’ multi-faceted challenge of driving sustainable energy development as energy demand increases. We are proud to support such a critical energy project in partnership with Tecnimont.’

The new gas-boosting stations are part of Algeria’s ambitious plan to strengthen its role in the global energy market and its commitment to natural gas as a key energy source for socio-economic development. According to Bloomberg NEF, Algeria became the second-largest gas supplier to Europe in 2023, further strengthening the country’s role in enhancing the energy security of the continent, particularly in Italy where Algeria represents the biggest single source of import.

The Hassi R’ Mel Project is part of a broader strategic collaboration between Algeria and Italy, which includes recently signed agreements to foster bilateral cooperation and provide financial support for Algeria’s gas production as part of the Mattei Plan. The Mattei Plan seeks to promote cooperation between Africa and Italy along five main policy pillars: education and training, agriculture, health, water and energy.

Packaging of the compressor trains, as well as manufacturing of the compressors and testing of the trains, will take place at Baker Hughes’ facilities in Italy.

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