DUBAI (Dow Jones)

The Abu Dhabi-based Dolphin Energy Ltd. said Tuesday it has awarded Russia's Stroytransgaz PJSC a $418 million contract to build the Taweelah-Fujairah natural gas pipeline that will feed a new power and desalination plant.

Dolphin, which imports Qatari natural gas to the United Arab Emirates via pipeline, said construction work will begin during the third-quarter of 2008.

The pipeline will link Dolphin Energy's gas receiving facilities at Taweelah, on the coast of Abu Dhabi, with the ADWEA Power and Water Desalination Plant at Qidfa, in Fujairah. "It is designed to carry significant quantities of Dolphin gas from Qatar via Taweelah directly to the U.A.E.'s east coast," the company said in an emailed statement.

Eight international construction companies initially bid for the work, and technical tenders were accepted from five, which proceeded to the commercial bid stage.

"Dolphin expects swift mobilization and efficient progress with the contract, and we are fully committed to supporting ADWEA's gas requirements," Dolphin's general manager, Ibrahim Ahmed Al Ansari, said in the statement.

Dolphin in December awarded Germany's Salzgitter Mannesmann International a contract worth more than $200 million to supply about 120,000 tons of coated line pipes for the project, with a first shipment already having arrived in Abu Dhabi, the company said.

Dolphin, owned 51% by Abu Dhabi through Mubadala Development Co., already supplies an existing power plant at Qidfa with 135 million cubic feet a day of gas through the Al Ain-Fujairah pipeline.

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