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Work set to start on $11bn new Saudi petrochem project

Saudi Aramco
Company executives at the signing ceremony of the Amiral complex contracts

Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Aramco) and France’s TotalEnergies have awarded contracts for the $11 billion new petrochemicals facility in Jubail, the eastern coast of Saudi Arabia.

The award of engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts for main process units and associated utilities marks the start of construction work on the ‘Amiral’ complex, following the final investment decision in December 2022, the two companies said in a joint statement.

Integrated with the existing Satorp refinery in Jubail, the new complex aims to have one of the largest mixed-load steam crackers in the Gulf region, with a capacity to produce 1,650 kilotonnes per annum (kta) of ethylene and other industrial gases.

The expansion is expected to attract more than $4 billion in additional investment in various industrial sectors, including carbon fibres, lubes, drilling fluids, detergents, food additives, automotive parts and tires. The new facility is expected to create 7,000 local direct and indirect jobs.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction Company was awarded a contract for a mixed feed cracker and utilities, with a nameplate capacity of 1,650 kta of ethylene and related industrial gases, and utilities, flares and interconnecting systems that support main packages within the facilities.

Maire Tecnimont bagged a contract for two polyethylene units using Advanced Dual Loop technology, with a nameplate capacity of 500 kta each and the derivative units.

Sinopec Engineering (Group) Saudi Co. Ltd will construct the tank farm and Satorp integration.

Reuters in May reported citing sources that Aramco is in a “listening phase” on proposals from Chinese refining giant Sinopec Corporation and TotalEnergies for a slice of a shale gas development project worth about $10 billion.

Sinopec and TotalEnergies are in separate discussions to invest in the Jafurah development in Saudi Arabia, the sources added.