Wartsila Corporation today opened a new, expanded office and workshop in Baku, Azerbaijan. The need for the new premises arose with the rapid expansion of work involved with the growing number of Wartsila power plants in the country and the number of vessels on the Caspian Sea fitted with Wartsila equipment.
The new 740 m2 offices and 1100 m2 workshop will provide a full range of sales and support services for both power plant and marine customers locally. The new premises in Baku also serve as a regional office for Wartsila activities in Central Asia.
Azerbaijan and Central Asia are rapidly growing markets for Wartsila, both in power plants and in shipping. The key driving forces are the availability of local natural gas to fuel power plants, the development of local oil and gas resources, and general growth in the regional economies. The new premises inaugurated today demonstrate Wartsila's intention to stay and grow in these markets.
Wartsila expected to grow
Wartsila has been present in Azerbaijan for about ten years. Currently Wartsila employs 59 people in Baku. The number is expected to grow to 75 in the course of this year. At present, 43 of these people are working in the premises while the remainder are employed at the various power plants in Azerbaijan. The great majority of the employees are local people and they are all trained to Wartsila's global standards. Through expanding, Wartsila provides local employment.
The new workshop includes facilities for reconditioning of fuel injection equipment, liner honing, turbocharger reconditioning and rebalancing, servicing automation equipment, machining, and the storage and handling of spare parts. Wartsila will be able to respond faster to customer needs through this local availability of high-quality services and parts supply.
Wartsila delivered power plants with output of 450 MWe
Wartsila currently has five power plants in operation in Azerbaijan with a combined output of 450 MWe at Astara, Baku, Khachmaz, Nakhchivan and Sheki. Operated by Azerienerji, the Azerbaijan electricity company, they are equipped with fifty-two 20-cylinder Wartsila 34SG gas-fuelled engines in V-configuration and supply to the national grid. Further plants ordered by Azerienerji include a 300 MWe plant with eighteen 18-cylinder Wartsila 50DF dual-fuel generating sets in Vee-form configuration at Sangachal and a 104 MWe plant with twelve 20-cylinder Wartsila 34SG generating sets in Vee-form configuration at the Guba sports complex.
An important function of the new Wartsila premises will be to supervise operations and maintenance of the Azerienerji power plants by Wartsila under maintenance contracts. As experience is built up in the Baku office it will lead to further development of services in the region to match the lifecycle needs of existing and forthcoming installations.
Better support for marine customers
For the marine market, the new office will enable Wartsila to offer more efficient and fully focused support to the large fleet of vessels fitted with Wartsila equipment operating in the Caspian oil and gas fields and the waterways linked to the Caspian Sea.