Bahrain Petroleum Company (Bapco) has shortlisted two international banks for the role of financial adviser on a project to expand and upgrade its Sitra refinery.

The two banks are the UK’s HSBC and France’s BNP Paribas. Four banks had responded to a request for proposals in late March, including the US’ JP Morgan and Citigroup (MEED 22:04:11).

Although the two banks have been shortlisted for the mandate, an award is not expected until September as Bapco reviews the scope of the project, which is expected to cost about $2bn.

The expansion of the Sitra refinery is intended to expand capacity from about 262,000 barrels a day (b/d) to between 500,000-600,000 b/d The additional capacity for the refinery depends on whether the expansion of a pipeline bringing crude oil in from Saudi Arabia is developed.

Sitra is the only refinery in Bahrain and was built in 1936.