Italy’s Belleli has won the main engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract on Fujairah-based Vopak Horizon’s estimated $100m expansion of its oil terminal in the northern emirate, sources close to the project tell MEED.

The Italian engineering firm will add 600,000 cubic metres of storage facilities to the terminal under the deal, which was formally awarded on 15 April. Its current storage capacity is 1.5 million cubic metres.

Vopak has also awarded a deal to build a 2-kilometre pipeline linking the storage facilities with offshore berths for cargo ships to an as yet unknown contractor, one executive who bid on the project says.

Vopak originally planned to add 1.2 million cubic metres and between four and six berths to its Fujairah facilities under the expansion. However, it decided to split the development into two phases following in-house engineering and design studies (MEED 7:8:09).

Belleli, the local Audex, the US’ Chicago Bridge & Iron, and India’s Punj Lloyd and Tata Projects submitted prices for the main EPC contract in a 10 October 2009 bid round.

Fujairah is expected to become an increasingly important location for oil storage and distribution when Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Company commissions a new pipeline linking oil processing and distribution facilities at Habshan in Abu Dhabi and export facilities at Fujairah, measuring 370km, in the third quarter of 2011.

It will be able to transport up to 1.5 million barrels a day of oil between the emirates from late 2011, allowing distribution companies to bypass the congested Strait of Hormuz when exporting oil products from the emirate.