According to the official UAE news agency WAM, the Abu Dhabi firm is in the process of setting up a project company with Moroccan partners to develop the plant. It will be built at Jorf Lasfar on the east coast, south of Casablanca.

Rabat first announced plans to build a $3bn refinery in co-operation with UAE companies last year.

IPIC ‘s board has also approved a project to build a new $5bn refinery with capacity of 250,000 barrels a day in Pakistan.