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Sohar Refinery expansion gains momentum

November 29/2011

(main.omanobserver.om) -- Orpic announced yesterday that three additional units will be included in the proposed Sohar Refinery Expansion Project. The new expansion supported by the Government of Oman is expected to improve the Sohar Refinery's product quality and increase output by more than 70 per cent.

Orpics CEO Musab al Mahruqi said, the latest additions to the Sohar Refinery Expansion Project came to enhance the production of petroleum products for local market and increase the gross margin for the refinery. Also, the addition came in view of the latest improvised operating experiences gained at Orpic.

Al Mahruqi added that Sohar Refinery has recently been operating at high utilisation rates reaching 110 per cent of design capacity. The improvement in utilisation rate has been incremental over the past few years and 2011 marked the highest average utilisation rate for the refinery. 2011 has also marked the second year for the commercial operation of the Aromatics plant in Sohar. The average utilisation rate for the Aromatics plant in 2011 exceeds 90 per cent whereas the feedstock is partially supplied by Sohar Refinery.

The additional units will be added to the current configuration for the Sohar Refinery Expansion Project which includes the following process units: Crude Distillation (CDU), Vacuum Distillation (VDU), Hydrocracker (HCU), Sulphur Recovery Units (SRU), Isomerisation (ISOM), PSA unit for Hydrogen, Sour water strippers, Amine Regeneration Unit along with other treating units together with Utilities and Offsites.

Perspectives of development of the polymers markets, pricing issues and other important aspects will be discussed at The Polymers Summit-2011, which will be held in Moscow on November 30, 2011 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. The Summit is organized by MRC with the support of ICIS. The main idea of the Summit is to find a "the golden mean" between producers and converters. When producers receive exactly such margin of production, which helps them to invest in production expansion in order to substitute polymers imports, and the converters receive such price of feedstock that helps them to compete imported finished products. The Summit site gives an access to the live video of the Summit, speakers" presentations, as well as opportunities to ask questions or make appointments to any Summit partcipant.

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