Oman Oil Marketing Company (OOMC) is expected to complete the design phase on its bunkering facility at the central port of Duqm by the end of June before moving on to the construction phase.

The estimated $50m facility will provide heavy fuel oil and marine diesel oil and well as marine lubricants to ships calling at the port.

The project’s engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract is expected to be tendered in the third quarter of 2014, according to sources close to the project.

In November 2013 OOMC signed a bunkering licence and land lease agreement with Port of Duqm Company (PDC) to develop the project.

The bunkering facility is part of the Port of Duqm’s strategy to create a new hub for oil and shipping midway between Oman’s existing major industrial centres of Sohar and Salalah, which will include a new refinery, petrochemicals complex and oil pipelines.

In addition, Oman Tank Terminal Company (OTTCO) plans to build a new oil storage terminal at Ras Markaz, 70 kilometres south of Duqm.

The project owner is understood to be preparing to award the front-end engineering and design (feed) and project management consultancy (PMC) contracts on the scheme.