The joint owners of a major refinery project in Duqm, central Oman, have asked companies to bid for a contract covering project management consultancy (PMC) at the development.

Muscat-based Oman Oil Company (OOC) and the UAE’s International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) released the tenders at the end of March, according to a source familiar with the project.

The partners are planning to build a 230,000 barrels-a-day (b/d) refinery and petrochemicals project at the Omani port, with capital expenditure estimated at $6bn.

Tenders for the front-end engineering and design (feed) contract are expected to be released when the exact configuration of the refinery has been formulated. The project is still at an early stage, with no technology agreements yet signed.

According to regional projects tracker MEED Projects, the feed tenders were initially expected to be released at the end of March.

Companies planning to bid for the feed include CB&I Lummus, Fluor Corporation, Foster Wheeler, Jacobs Engineering Group, JGC Corporation, KBR, Shaw Group and Technip.

The Omani cabinet made the final decision to move ahead with the project at the end of February, according to a Times of Oman story quoting a Duqm Special Economic Zone Authority official.