06 February 2008 15:44 [Source: ICIS news]
DUBAI (ICIS news)--The planned integrated refinery and petrochemicals complex at Duqm in southeast Oman has taken a step forward after Muscat issued a tender for a masterplan covering the integration of the complex within the free zone and industrial area.
Sources close to the scheme on Wednesday said the refinery, processing heavy Omani crude oil, will have capacity of 300,000 bbl/day.
Duqm Refining & Petrochemical Complex is also expected to include a cracker, one of the world's largest polypropylene plants and mixed feedstock aromatics facilities. Commercial production is planned for 2012.
"The government is finalising discussions with two major potential stakeholders in the refinery and petrochemicals complex," said a source close to the project. "It is at an advanced stage in its negotiations with foreign partners."
"Over the next five years the political will is for Duqm to be taken forward as the major development area in ?xml:namespace>
Bids are due in mid-February for the masterplan, with a decision expected by August. More than 20 firms have shown interest in the contract.
The future of the Duqm refinery had been in doubt because of rising costs. In 2007, it was feared that its planned capacity of 300,000 bbl/day would be slashed to 150,000 bbl/day.
However, government support for the project is strong. It is the fourth economic zone to be developed, after similar projects at Sohar, Salalah and
"The political will is for Duqm to be taken forward as the major development area in
The development, south of
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