Oman Oil and Orpic Group inaugurates Sohar Refinery Improvement Project

Oman Oil and Orpic Group inaugurates Sohar Refinery Improvement Project
Published: 2 April 2019 - 5 a.m.
By: Martin Menachery
The Oman Oil and Orpic Group officially inaugurated one of its strategic growth projects – the Sohar Refinery Improvement Project (SRIP) – under the auspices of Dr Mohammed bin Hamed Al Rumhi, minister of oil and gas, chairman of the board of directors, and in the presence of a number of ministers, representatives of the state and Al Shura Councils along with senior officials from Daelim of South Korea and UK-based Petrofac as well as community leaders.

The $2.7bn capital investment by the group adds up 82,000bpd to its existing capacity of 116,000bpd – taking the total capacity to 198,000bpd. This indicates a 70% growth in fuel production – 90% for diesel, 37% for gasoline, 93% for kerosene, 93% for jet fuel, 91% for LPG, 175% for naphtha and 44% for propylene.

Speaking on this occasion, Dr Al Rumhy said: “The project represents a significant economic and strategic importance for the refinery and petroleum industries in the sultanate. It is a testament to the group's continuous efforts and contribution to the nation and is an outcome of the concerted efforts of our highly experienced and dedicated team. Aside from its immediate commercial benefits, SRIP also has an impact on other important areas of national economic development such as In-Country Value (ICV) creation, employment generation, and SME support.”

Musab bin Abdullah Al Mahruqi, Oman Oil and Orpic Group CEO, said: "The Sohar Refinery Improvement Project comes in response to a number of factors, including changes in demand for refined products in the sultanate and beyond. The project is a part of the group's aspirations to manage one million barrels of oil equivalent per day, in addition to increasing the value added per barrel in the downstream industry, in line with the vision of the sultanate of processing crude more effectively to maximise the return.”

The Sohar Refinery Improvement project contributes significantly to improving the environmental performance of Sohar Refinery and supporting it in overcoming the challenges resulting from the changing quality of the crude oil mix. The project adds five new units, improving Sohar Refinery’s ability to process heavier Omani crude oil, including crude distillation unit (CDU), vacuum distillation unit (VDU), delayed coker unit (DCU), hydrocracker unit (HCU) and bitumen blowing unit. These units enable Sohar refinery to increase the value achieved from each barrel of crude oil and confirms the importance of the project at the national level.

Ahmed bin Saleh Al Jahdhami, downstream CEO, Oman Oil and Orpic Group, added: “This important national project has been achieved through a clear vision, planning and proficiency in implementation at all levels and stages of work. Having competent talent working with dedication and with team spirit was the core of the project's success. Achieving this project and other successful projects completed by Orpic enhance our confidence in our ability to leverage these capabilities across the group projects in general and the downstream projects such as Duqm refinery. We thank the EPC consortium (Daelim and Petrofac) for their commitment to the execution of the project, and we are grateful to the project lenders for their trust and support to the company’s projects.”

It is worth to mention that the refinery is able to handle all primary initial quantities entering its units, allowing the output of refining operations to be high-quality fuel and high-value petrochemical products. The project also enables the refinery to cope with unforeseen changes in crude oil quality, demonstrating the project’s importance at the national level in enhancing the extracted value from the Omani oil barrel.

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