Iraq has signed a memorandum of understanding with Egyptian private equity firm, Citadel Capital, for the construction of a new 150,000-barrel-a-day (b/d) refinery at Mosul, in the north of the country.

The agreement lays the principles for a domestic refinery in Mosul to be supplied by the crude oil from Najama and Qayara oil fields, according to the Oil Ministry’s undersecretary for refineries’ affairs, Ahmed al-Shama, Aswat al-Iraq news agency reports.

Citadel Capital has been given 3-year period to prepare studies and designs.

Iraq is planning several new refineries across the country. In late July, the Oil Ministry signed an agreement with the Refinery of Karbala Corporation (RKC), an Italy/UAE consortium, for the construction of a 200,000 b/d refinery at Karbala, 100 kilometres south of Baghdad (MEED 27:7:11).

RKC expects construction to begin in early 2012. However, the Oil Ministry says the agreement is only valid for six months, after which it is not bound to the scheme.

Feasibility studies are currently being undertaken by international engineering firms for three other refineries; 300,000 b/d at Nassiriyah in south Iraq; and two 150,000-b/d refineries in Missan province in the south and at Kirkuk in the north.