Saudi Aramco and Bahrain Petroleum Company (Bapco) have completed the front-end engineering and design (feed) on their $350m crude oil pipeline and are expected to tender the construction contracts in late 2014.

Speaking at the MEED Bahrain Energy Forum 2014, Sheikh Mohamad bin Khalifa al-Khalifa, chief executive of the Bahrain oil industry’s governing body Noga Holding, said that the project should move forward this year.

Australia’s WorleyParsons has carried out the feed and the next step is to release the tender for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract. The capacity will be 350,000 barrels a day and will replace the existing 230,000 b/d pipeline currently in operation. 

The pipeline will be 115 kilometres in length of which 74km will be overland and the remainder subsea. It will transport crude from Aramco’s Abqaiq plant to Bahrain.

The additional crude will be made available to Bapco in order for the company to expand its Sitra refinery operations to as much as 460,000 b/d. The Bapco refinery is currently evaluating tenders for the feed and project management consultancy for its proposed $9bn expansion and rehabilitation.