The Qatar Fertilizer Company (QAFCO) has renewed a contract with Honeywell (NYSE:HON) to provide safety and automation systems for QAFCO’s existing plants, expansion projects and future projects. The agreement – one of the longest duration agreements of its kind to be signed in the Middle East – is for 10 years with an option to extend for an additional four.
QAFCO was founded in 1969 as Qatar’s first large-scale venture to support diversification of the country’s economy whilst using their extensive natural gas reserves. After successfully implementing several expansion projects over the past three decades, QAFCO has evolved into a world-class fertilizer producer currently exporting ammonia and urea to more than 35 countries.
“The partnership between QAFCO and Honeywell is built on mutual trust and respect,” says Khalifa Al-Sowaidi, Vice-Chairman and CEO of QAFCO. “For our greenfield sites, we will deploy Honeywell’s Advanced Process Control and Operator Trainer Simulator technologies to optimize process performance and workforce training. For our brownfield sites, we will receive risk-free project implementation of the latest technology, backed up by long-term support at overall lower cost of ownership.”
“We are delighted to see our close relationship with QAFCO continue to grow,” says Orhan Genis, vice president-sales, Honeywell Process Solutions, EMEA. “This renewal of an existing nine-year agreement with QAFCO clearly confirms that this partnership is a “win-win” proposition for both parties. QAFCO receives the best technology with low cost of ownership and long-term support, while Honeywell continues to be QAFCO’s preferred automation partner.”
The agreement covers six ammonia plants, six urea plants and a melamine plant, and will involve the provision of Honeywell’s Distributed Control Systems, Emergency Shutdown Systems, and advanced application systems, such as Plant Information Management Systems, Laboratory Information Management Systems, Advanced Process Control, and Operator Training Simulators.
Such long-term agreements are rare for companies in the Middle East, making this latest contract a significant show of QAFCO’s faith in Honeywell’s industrial technology. The latest agreement increases the scope of the previous partnership and incorporates QAFCO’s future business needs, allowing QAFCO to utilize Honeywell’s local support capabilities with minimal technical and commercial execution risk.
Honeywell is unique amongst automation suppliers to the fertilizer industry in that it owns and operates an ammonia plant, which combined with its deep domain experience built up over decades of experience in designing, installing and maintaining automation systems for petrochemical manufacturers, provides QAFCO with a highly experienced automation partner.
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