Three separate companies have been awarded the contracts, with the upgrade of Mina al-Ahmadi scheduled for completion in 44 months and the two packages for the Mina ‘Abd Allah revamp expected to take 45 months, according to Central Tenders Committee Chairman Ahmad al-Kulaib.

The awards reflect KNPC’s determination to progress two major projects – the clean fuels upgrade and construction of a new 615,000 b/d refinery at Al-Zour – that have been planned for many years, but have not progressed because a succession of parliaments have blocked projects across the energy sector. While the Supreme Petroleum Council has the ultimate say, newly appointed Minister of Oil Ali Salih al-‘Umair – an Islamist who has been a leading critic of earlier oil deals (MEES, 10 January) – may prove key if the clean fuels project-related deals are to avoid parliamentary scrutiny. (CONTINUED - 660 WORDS)