Contract regime

No standard contracts or solutions for specific use in offshore wind projects have yet been established.

In our experience, the type of contract used may vary from project to project, but is often based on standard contracts known from the oil and gas industry and land based construction, such as NTK 15, ABA 99, FIDIC and LOGIC. However, the distribution of risk is typically changed involving an increased exposure for the Contractors. This is due to i.a. the different financing arrangements used in offshore wind projects, combined with the organization of such projects in special purpose vehicles and generally lower margins for the developers. The contract models, procurement strategies and some reflections related to the terms and conditions often seen in international projects are further elaborated on by Haavind in its contribution to the Offshore Wind Entry Programme. The program aims to accelerate the competitiveness of the supplier industry in the new and fast growing market of offshore wind.

It may be appropriate to develop a separate Norwegian contract standard for use in construction of offshore wind projects. Such standard contract should be based on our vast experience from the offshore oil and gas sector and should ensure a risk profile that attracts a sustainable construction market. A key consideration for such contract standard will be offshore and onshore bankability.

In addition to the construction contracts, there will also be a need to contractually regulate the design of any joint venture and joint operating agreement, operator services, offtake (including PPA, and grid connection) and potential transfer of licenses. The corporate structure will largely depend on the final legal regime. As explained under the Grid and Off-take section, there are many off-take alternatives, with different legal and factual profiles (e.g. charging station for ships, foreign power cables, electrification of the continental shelf).

The organisations in the offshore wind industry are currently working on developing standard contracts for offshore wind, though no outlook can yet be provided on when this work can be expected to be completed. Haavind is following this development continuously.

The Federation of Norwegian Industries have drafted a guide on the contractual challenges, opportunities and typical risk distribution in the offshore wind industry.