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Fluor Expects More Than $8.3 Billion in 2012 Oil, Gas Awards

Fluor Corp., the largest publicly traded U.S. engineering and construction company, expects to win more than $8.3 billion in new oil and gas business this year, boosted by contracts in North America.

“It’s still a highly competitive market, but we expect to see growth in awards in 2012,” Peter Oosterveer, president of Fluor’s energy and chemicals unit, said in an interview today in Kuala Lumpur, where he’s attending an industry conference. “We expect 2012 to start to show an inflection point.”

The pace of oil and gas awards, which totaled $3.9 billion during the first quarter, may not be sustained in the full year, he said. New awards won by Irving, Texas-based Fluor fell to $8.3 billion in 2011 from $9.7 billion the previous year.

North America, especially Canada, is set to make the biggest contribution to growth in the energy unit this year, he said. Contracts in the first quarter included two refining projects for Reliance Industries Ltd. in India and oil sands work in Canada.

Fluor, which had cash, plus securities, of $2.7 billion at the end of the first quarter, may seek small acquisitions in the energy business this year, he said.

“You probably won’t see us going on a buying spree like some of our competitors,” Oosterveer said. “What you could expect us to do is be selective and do some niche acquisitions in some places,” including Latin America.

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