Commissioned in 1949 as a simple refinery, Mina al-Ahmadi underwent a major expansion in 1958 that took its capacity to 190,000 barrels a day (b/d). The refinery has been expanded several times since and is now part of Kuwait’s major Clean Fuels Project (CFP) upgrade programme, which will also see the Mina Abdullah refinery revamped.

In 1963, Mina al-Ahmadi’s capacity was increased to 250,000 b/d. A gas liquefaction unit was added in 1978, followed by a reformer unit in 1981 and a fluid catalytic cracker in 1987.

The plant’s three crude distillation units now have a capacity of 466,000 b/d.

South Korea’s Daelim completed a project to add a fourth gas fractionation train in 2014, after being awarded a contract worth $886m. A $400m acid gas recovery unit is due for commissioning this year; the work is being undertaken by Italy’s Maire Tecnimont.

The $4.8bn upgrade to Mina al-Ahmadi as part of the CFP will help protect Kuwait’s future economic prospects and allow the refinery to cope with the increasing sulphur content in the country’s crudes as well as meet more stringent international product specifications.