US contractor McDermott International is in pole position to land a sizeable offshore pipe and pipelaying deal from Qatargas, as a part of the emirate’s multibillion-dollar North Field sustainability (NFPS) project.

While Qatar is spending up to $50 billion on expanding the production potential of North Field, the nation is also spending massively on its multi-phased NFPS project that aims to maintain the offshore field’s gas production profile.

McDermott has been chosen as the “preferred contractor” by the Qatari state giant for carrying out work on the NFPS engineering, procurement, construction and installation package 1 (EPCI 1) — expected to be potentially worth more than $1 billion — multiple people with direct knowledge of the development told Upstream.