Wed, Jul 17, 2019 - Page 12 News List

Orsted to settle Woen-Jinn pre-installation fees

PULLOUT:The Taiwanese firm in May said it wanted out of a deal to install array cables for offshore wind farm projects. There is no word yet on a replacement

By Natasha Li  /  Staff reporter

Orsted A/S yesterday said it would settle fees related to covering the costs of Woen-Jinn Harbour Engineering Co’s (穩晉) pre-installation expenditures after the Taiwanese offshore cable installation company decided to back out of a deal.

The fees would include the project feasibility assessment, certificate of vessel conformity, evaluation of vessel transformation/construction and recruitment and training of marine engineering professionals.

When the Danish energy firm made its final investment decision in May, Woen-Jinn asked to terminate the NT$1 billion (US$32.21 million) contract to install a significant scope of array cables that would secure substantial work for Orsted’s wind farm projects in the greater Changhua region.

The contract provided grounds for Woen-Jinn investing in the construction of a cable-laying vessel, the WoenJinn#7.

Woen-Jinn previously said it would invest up to NT$2 billion in the vessel, which was originally scheduled to be completed by next year, but its board of directors decided to withdraw from the contract, citing financial concerns.

The company’s shareholders had called for such a move, as Woen-Jinn has had trouble completing personnel recruitment and training on time, online news outlet Storm Media (風傳媒) reported yesterday.

Woen-Jinn hired 20 more employees since it began collaborating with Orsted, then known as DONG Energy, in 2016.

Orsted established a team of 10 specialists to assist Woen-Jinn with developing all required standards and competencies.

Woen-Jinn has completed the offshore cable installation for the first phase of the Formosa 1 project in the waters off Miaoli County’s Jhunan Township (竹南), which is scheduled to be operational by the end of this year, becoming Taiwan’s first offshore wind farm project to generate power.

It is not known if Orsted will seek foreign companies to help with cable installation.

The Kaohsiung Marine Engineering Association has reportedly said there are no other available cable-laying vessels in Taiwan.

“Based on the local content rule, the company in question would have to submit relevant documents supporting the reasons for foreign purchases,” Cheng Ju-min (鄭如閔), an energy technology division senior specialist at the Bureau of Energy, said by telephone.

Orsted on Friday inked a deal with South Korea-based LS Cable & System Corp to supply submarine cables to the Changhua 1 and 2a wind farms, located 35km to 50km off the coast of Changhua County.

The construction of the wind farms is to be completed by 2021-2022, Orsted has said, adding that they would have a capacity of approximately 900 megawatts and be capable of supplying about 1 million Taiwanese households.

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