The tendering process for the construction of a new refinery in Fujairah, UAE, has been delayed for several months with no clear bid deadline in place, according to sources close to the bidding process.

State-owned International Petroleum Development Company (Ipic), the project’s developer, tendered the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) packages in the third quarter of 2013 but have yet to receive bids from companies preparing technical proposals.

“Technical bids have not yet been submitted and the submission date has not been fixed [by the project owner],” a source active on the project said.

The technical bids were initially expected to be submitted by the end of 2013.

Ipic is planning to build a 200,000 barrel-a-day (b/d) facility to meet rising demand for fuels in the UAE and enable the export of oil products from Fujairah’s port.

The EPC work for the estimated $3.5bn project has been divided into two separate packages, says a company planning to bid on the scheme. The first package covers the process units and the second comprises the utilities, offsites and infrastructure.

Companies prequalified to bid for the EPC contracts include South Korean groups Daelim Industrial, GS Engineering & Construction, Hyundai Engineering & Construction, Hyundai Heavy Industries, Samsung Engineering and SK Engineering & Construction and Japan’s JGC.

France’s Technip completed the front-end engineering and design (feed) phase of the project in 2013.