Leaders of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) project, which is designed to carry gas from the second stage development of BP’s Shah Deniz Field from Azerbaijan to Europe across a deepwater section of the Adriatic Sea, have taken the decision to relaunch the procurement process.

Existing pre-qualified suppliers are required to retender for the Engineering Procurement and Construction scope, including the onshore and offshore pipeline construction services.

The decision comes after TAP, based in Switzerland, said only that it had decided to issue the new tender “...following a review of its strategy and schedule.”

A second supply contract being re-offered covers the procurement of steel pipe, SCADA systems, and large diameter pipe valves, and will be managed by TAP directly.

TAP shareholders agreed to go ahead with the pipeline late last year after BP approved the phase two development of the Shah Deniz gas and condensate field in the Caspian Sea.

The Trans Adriatic Pipeline includes a 105 km (65.6 mile) underwater section across the Adriatic from Albania to southern Italy, to be installed in water depths of up to 810 m (2,656 ft).

Shah Deniz phase II involves trebling output by adding a further 16 Bcm of production to the 9 Bcm of gas already produced in stage one, which will be carried 3,500 km (2,200 miles) to Europe via three major trunk lines – the South Caucasus Pipeline, the Trans-Anatolian Pipeline across Turkey, and via TAP through Greece and Albania to Italy, with total costs of about US $28 billion.