Integrated oil and gas services provider, SapuraKencana Petroleum Bhd, successfully launched its first pipe laying vessel, Sapura Diamante on Friday.
The launch marks a significant new chapter for the group's expansion into Brazil's giant oil and gas sector.
The 550-tonne vessel is the first in a series of six fully integrated offshore vessels to be used to develop deep-sea oilfields in Brazilian waters on behalf of Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro (Petrobras).
Sapura Kencana President and group chief executive Tan Sri Shahril Shamsuddin said the group is grateful at being given an opportunity to enter Brazil's oil and gas industry and was deeply committed to delivering on Petrobras' expectations.
Speaking at the vessel christening and launch ceremony in Rotterdam, Shahril said the project not only enhances Sapura Kencana's global presence, but also the opportunity for the group to expand and learn, thus increasing its competitive edge.
Sapura Kencana's associate company, Sapura Navegacao Maritima S.A Brazil, was awarded the US$4.1 billion (RM13.1 billion) contract to build, charter and operate six deepwater flexible pipe laying support vessels (PLSVs) by Petrobras.
The award is expected to contribute positively to the group's net assets and future earnings.
The Sapura Diamante, build by IHC Merwede, is capable of operating in depths of up to 2,500 meters and is suitable for worldwide operation.
The vessel is fitted with two underdeck storage carousels.
IHC Merwede will also build four more vessels for Sapura Kencana with the second, Sapura Topazio, already under construction at the company's shipyard in Rotterdam.
Meanwhile Petrobras' Executive Manager of E&P ?Service, Christina Lucia Duarte Pinho said the vessel is part of an important fleet of PLSVs in Brazil and vital to the country's target of achieving 4.0 billion barrels of oil per day in 2020.
"We're very pleased to have Sapura working in Brazil. The company is committed to having very good operations in the future. We will be working together on projects and assisting in ensuring a good performance towards achieving our oil production goal," she added.
She said Sapura Kencana had the track record, capability and experience, while proving that the group can finance the vessels and deliver on time.
When asked if there could be more collaborations with Sapura Kencana in future, she said: "I am sure there will be. We have so many things to do".
SapuraKencana Petroleum Berhad (SapuraKencana) is one of the world's largest integrated oil and gas services and solutions provider. The Group's principal business include providing end-to-end solutions and services to the upstream petroleum industry, and covers activities such as installation of offshore pipelines and structures, fabrication of offshore structures, accommodation and support vessels, drilling vessels, hook-up and commissioning, topside maintenance services, underwater services, offshore geotechnical and geophysical services, project management, diving services, offshore support services, infrastructure and specialised steel fabrication works.