Estimated to cost $2,000 million, the complex will entail the construction of an integrated 2.9 million-tonne-a-year (t/y) di-ammonia phosphate (DAP) plant, two sulphuric acid trains with combined capacity of 450,000 t/y, a 140,000-t/y phosphoric acid plant and a 2,000-tonne-a-day ammonia plant. The SNC/Jacobs group carried out a full feasibility study for the complex.

Different elements of the complex are at various stages of implementation. While engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) bids were submitted in mid-December for the sulphuric acid plant, prices are due to be submitted by early March for the remaining three EPC packages – the DAP plant, the phosphoric acid plant and the ammonia plant (MEED 23:12:05).

More exploration and production work is planned by Maaden. A tender was issued in late December for an estimated $35 million engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contract covering the development of magnesite deposits in Yanbu. Three companies – Oslo-based Aker Kvaerner, the US’ Mustang Engineering and WorleyParsons – have been invited to submit technical and commercial bids on 25 February.