Oman’s 198,000 barrel-a-day refinery at Sohar will come online by September following an expansion programme to boost capacity, according to sources.

The refinery is undergoing a $2.7bn improvement programme to boost production capacity to 198,000 barrels a day (b/d) from 82,000 b/d.

Sohar Refinery was due to come on-stream in first quarter of 2017. Work on the project, which involves construction of a plant producing naphtha, gasoline and diesel is now close to being completed, according to contractors.

In 2013, a team of the UK’s Petrofac and South Korea’s Daelim was awarded the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract. The $2.1bn deal is one of the largest EPC contracts ever awarded in the sultanate.

The project management consultancy and front-end engineering design were both carried out by US firm CB&I.

Developer Oman Oil Refineries and Petroleum Industries Company (Orpic) also operates Oman’s oldest refinery Mina al-Fahal, which has a capacity of 106,000 b/d.

The operator is also developing a 266km pipeline to connect the refinery at Muscat with the one at Sohar. The $320m Muscat-Sohar pipeline project was 69 per cent complete as of November 2016.

Orpic is also set to commission a $80m fuel distribution facility at Al-Jifnain.

The sultanate is looking to further boost its refining capacity and is developing the 236,000 b/d Duqm Refinery. The project, which is Oman’s largest single phase project ever to be undertaken has yet to reach financial close. It is being developed by a joint venture of Kuwait Petroleum International and Oman Oil Company.