Norway’s Equinor and UK partner BP have launched the next stage of their challenging US$9.4 billion Bay du Nord oil development offshore eastern Canada by kick-starting the bid process on a critical engineering contract.

Located in the oil-rich Flemish Pass basin offshore Newfoundland & Labrador, Bay du Nord is an expected 200,000 barrels per day project, due on stream later this decade, featuring a giant subsea production complex and a newbuild floating production, storage and offloading vessel.

Earlier this year, BP took a major stake in the deep-water asset by acquiring the share held by Calgary-based Cenovus Energy.