Duqm Refinery & Petrochemical Industries Company (DRPIC) has invited companies to express interest in prequalifying for a tender involving the construction of a new refinery at the central port of Duqm in Oman.

DRPIC, a 50:50 joint venture of Abu Dhabi’s state-owned International Petroleum Industries Company (Ipic) and Oman Oil Company (OOC), has asked interested companies to submit prequalification requests for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) tender by 23 October.

The firm is planning to build a new 230,000 barrel-a-day (b/d) refinery in the Al-Wusta governorate on the sultanate’s central coast.

MEED revealed in March that Switzerland-based Foster Wheeler had been awarded the front-end engineering and design (feed) contract for the project.

The EPC phase is likely to be tendered in the first half of 2015, but it is unclear how many packages the scope will be split into.

The refinery will handle the import of crude from outside Oman and the export of refined products to the international market.

Site preparation work is expected to start in the first quarter of 2015 and be completed in the first quarter of 2016. This will lay the groundwork to start the construction of the refinery in 2016.

DRPIC is planning to build a petrochemicals complex for the second phase of the scheme, but this is thought to be still in the early study phase.