July 7, 2009 / 12:48 PM / in 9 years

UPDATE 1-Fluor wins Kearl Oil Sands contract in Canada

* Says to book $1.5 billion in 2009 from the project

* Majority of this will be booked in Q2

TORONTO, July 7 (Reuters) - Fluor Corp (FLR.N), the largest publicly traded U.S. engineering and construction company, said on Tuesday it won a contract to build infrastructure and facilities for the first phase of Imperial Oil’s (IMO.TO) Kearl oil sands project in Alberta.

Fluor said it will book about $1.5 billion in revenue this year, in connection with this project. The majority of this will be recognized in the second quarter of 2009.

Kearl, a surface mining and bitumen extraction operation located 70 kilometers Northeast of Fort McMurray, was recently approved by Imperial Oil, Canada’s biggest oil exploration and refining firm.

The C$8 billion ($6.83 billlion) project is the first major new development to be approved in the region since the recession and collapse in oil prices forced a spate of cancellations. Imperial expects to complete the mining project’s first 110,000-barrel-per-day stage by late 2012.

Imperial, which is 69.9-percent owned by Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N), expects that future expansions at the site could boost production to 300,000 barrels a day.

Alberta’s oil sands contain more than 170 billion barrels of recoverable crude but the resource is technically difficult and expensive to extract.

The tar-like bitumen stripped from the sand must also be upgraded before it is usable. Most major projects include upgraders to turn the bitumen into refinery ready synthetic crude but Imperial plans to sell the bitumen directly to refineries.

The Kearl project will be Imperial’s third major oil sands investment. It holds a 25 percent stake in Syncrude Canada Ltd, the biggest oil sands producer, and operates the Cold Lake oil sands project, which produces around 150,000 barrels a day.

Imperial will own 70 percent of the Kearl project while Exxon Mobil holds the remaining stake.

$1=C$1.15 Reporting by Euan Rocha; Additional reporting by Scott Haggett in Calgary; Editing by Derek Caney

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