Laing O’Rourke has pulled 800 contractors off Darwin's Ichthys LNG project.
The project is in disarray after meetings held in Japan recently failed to resolve issues with with Laing's Joint Venture partner Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), whom they had been constructing cryogenic LNG tanks with.
Laing O’Rourke claims KHI has not made any payments for the project in several months and as such has pulled 800 contractors off the project. This includes 245 local workers, 395 FIFO workers and 200 sub-contractors.
A statement from the company said “Laing O’Rourke has made significant efforts to resolve the matter but direct approaches to KHI in Japan over recent weeks have failed to produce a satisfactory outcome.”
A consortium of Japanese engineering groups JGC and Chiyoda and US engineering group KBR, believe that the dispute will be resolved and works will continue.
The consortium has encouraged sub-contractors to pick up the Laing O’Rourke workers and deploy them in other positions.
Laing O’Rourke has said it is trying to redeploy the staff across other projects they are involved in.
Laing O’Rourke and Kawasaki Heavy Industries were contracted in 2012 to engineer, procure and construct the cryogenic tanks. This included two 165,000m3 LNG tanks, one 85,000m3 propane tank and one 60,000m3 butane tank.