State giant Saudi Aramco and Indonesian counterpart Pertamina are close to finalizing a joint venture to oversee the $4-5bn expansion of the Cilicap refinery in central Java, which will see crude distillation capacity rise from 348,000 b/d to 370,000 b/d.

The partners this week awarded UK contractor Amec Foster Wheeler an engineering and project management services contract for the planned upgrade. Aramco and Pertamina signed a heads of agreement for joint ownership, operation and upgrading of Cilacap last November; award of the PMS contract indicates that their JV is close to being finalized. Equity will be split 55:45 between Pertamina and Aramco, Pertamina refining director Rachmad Hardadi told reporters at the 23 May signing ceremony. (CONTINUED - 763 WORDS)