BREAKING: Adnoc to invest $3.1bn on Ruwais Refinery upgrade

07 February 2018
Move will let Adnoc free large volumes of high-value Murban crude grade for export

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) has announced a $3.1bn project to enable crude processing flexibility at its Ruwais oil refinery.

The Crude Flexibility Project (CFP)is part of Adnoc’s downstream strategy to enhance margins by introducing asset flexibility, backed by strong crude and product marketing initiatives.

The announcement follows the award of an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract, for the project, to a joint venture of South Korea’s Samsung Engineering and the Netherlands-based CB&I.

The refinery modifications, scheduled to be completed by the end of 2022, will enable Adnoc’s Ruwais Refinery-West complex to process up to 420,000 barrels a day (b/d) of Upper Zakum crude, or similar crude types from the market. This will free up Murban crude grade, which commands a higher price on global oil markets, to be utilised for export sales.

“Enabling the Ruwais Refinery-West to process Upper Zakum, or similar, medium sour crude, in place of Murban light sweet crude, will allow us to extract greater value from our crude resources,” Abdulaziz Abdulla Alhajri, director of Adnoc’s Downstream Directorate, revealed in a press release.

“It will mean we can maximise the benefit of price differentials to enhance refinery margins, improve the middle distillate products and release valuable Murban crude into the market.”

The planned modifications will add an Atmospheric Residue De-Sulphurisation (ARDS) unit that will enable the refinery to process the Upper Zakum crude, or other similar crudes from the market.

The ARDS technology is used in upgrading medium to heavy petroleum oils and residues to more valuable clean environmentally friendly transportation fuels, and to partially convert the residues to produce low-sulphur fuel oil and hydro-treated feedstocks.

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