Qatargas has started production at the country’s first condensate refinery following a 10-month delay in completing the facility.

The refinery has capacity of 146,000 barrels a day (b/d) which is split into 61,000 b/d of naphtha, 52,000 b/d of kerojet, 24,000 b/d of gas-oil and 9,000 b/d of liquefied petroleum gas.

A consortium of South Korea’s GS Engineering & Construction and Daewoo Engineering & Construction built the first-phase refinery while France’s Technip carried out the front-end engineering and design (Feed) work.

The original deadline for first output from the refinery was November 2008. Qatargas started production on 23 September 2009.

Qatargas runs the refinery on behalf of its shareholders which comprises the state-run Qatar Petroleum with a 51 per cent stake, and France’s Total, the US’ ExxonMobil Corporation, as well as Cosmo Oil and Idemitsu, both of Japan, each holding 10 per cent stakes. Japan’s Mitsui and Marubeni Corporation each hold 4.5 per cent shares in the company.

An invitation to bid for the pre-Feed contract for the second phase expansion of the refinery to 292,000 b/d is expected in the fourth quarter (MEED 26:6:09).