Iraq’s Oil Ministry has awarded the US’ KBR a deal for licensing and basic engineering services for two units at the planned grassroots refinery in Maysan province, in the southeast of Iraq.

The two units awarded by State-owned South Refineries Company cover fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) and solvent deasphalting (SDA) units, according to a 24 August company statement.

KBR will license its technology for the FCC unit, which is expected to process 47,500 barrels a day (b/d) of crude oil. It will also use its Residuum Oil Supercritical Extraction technology for a 45,000 b/d SDA unit.

According to KBR, the FCC unit will be delivered under a joint marketing alliance between KBR and ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company.

The Oil Ministry signed a deal with a consortium led by state-owned China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) and Sinochem to develop the 2.5 billion barrel Maysan oilfield complex in March.

Sinochem was replaced by state-owned energy firm Turkish Petroleum (TPAO) on 12 May when the deal was ratified. CNOOC will hold a 60 per cent stake in the venture, while a Iraqi state-owned oil company will hold 25 per cent and TPAO the remaining 15 per cent (MEED 21:5:10).

CNOOC and China’s Sinochem made an unsuccessful bid for Maysan fields in Iraq’s first licensing round in June last year, but finally accepted the government’s proposed remuneration fee of $2.30 for each additional barrel of oil produced.