Foster Wheeler Secures Stage One Of Contract For Major Clean-Fuels Project In New Zealand

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February 19, 2003

Foster Wheeler (NYSE:FWC) today announced that it has been awarded a contract by The Zealand Refining Company Ltd. (NZRC) to support NZRC in producing an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) sanction package for the New Zealand Future Fuels project. The project, located at Whangarei, North Island, New Zealand, involves modifying New Zealand's sole refinery to produce low-sulfur diesel fuel and low-benzene, -sulfur and -aromatics gasoline. The project will be executed by Foster Wheeler's Thailand office, one of four Foster Wheeler execution centers in the Asia Pacific region.

The project, which has an investment value of more than $75 million, is split into two stages. Foster Wheeler has been awarded Stage 1, which requires supporting NZRC in producing an EPC sanction package from a number of separate basic design engineering packages (BDEPs). Award of the contract for Stage 2, covering engineering, procurement and construction, is expected later this year. Start-up of the new facilities is scheduled for mid-2005.
The clean-fuels project includes new processing units for hydrodesulfurization, benzene removal and hydrogen separation, as well as a significant revamp of existing facilities. Foster Wheeler is working on the refinery to ensure compliance with forthcoming changes to New Zealand's national transport fuel specifications. These require reduced sulfur in automotive diesel fuel (50 ppm or less) and reduced benzene (one percent by volume), sulfur and aromatics content in motor gasoline by 2006.

The refinery currently produces 106,000 barrels per stream day. Expected throughput for the new units is as follows: hydrodesulfurizer - 3,600 tonnes per stream day (t/sd), and benzene removal unit - 2,900 t/sd.

Ian Bill, chairman and chief executive, Foster Wheeler Energy Limited, said, "We are delighted to be involved in a New Zealand flagship project, and we are committed to helping NZRC comply with its government's clean-fuels legislation. We will be using our extensive experience in clean-fuels projects and in refinery revamp, turnaround management and execution to help achieve this goal. Foster Wheeler will also be using value-adding and cost-control methods to ensure a world-class project is achieved by NZRC."

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