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Al Fahal Refinery Operations Restart

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 11/6/2012, Location: Middle East

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Mina Al Fahal Refinery affiliated to Oman Oil Refineries and Petroleum Industries Company (Orpic) resumed operations of the main unit, which separates crude oil after the facility was temporarily shut down due to a recent fire incident. During the interval, which lasted almost three weeks; Orpic continued to provide the local market with different kinds of fuels, including petrol, diesel, aircraft fuel and liquefied petrol gas (cooking gas), relying mainly on Sohar Refinery and imports from the neighbouring countries to meet its obligations.

Orpic is managing Mina Al Fahal Refinery in Muscat, as well as Sohar Refinery and the Aromatics and the Polypropylene projects at its complex in Sohar. The production capacity of the two refineries is 222,000 bpd of naphtha, liquefied petrol gas, auto fuels, diesel, fuel oil and aviation fuel. This enables the company to cover 100 of the local market needs and export some of its products to different world markets.

Meanwhile, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the United States has said that the Sultanate succeeded in implementing a successful programme to reverse oil production downtrend through the use of advanced enhanced oil recovery (EOR), while at the same time exerting efforts on the diversification track as a substitute for sustaining the national economy in the event of a recession in oil production.

A recent report issued by the EIA said that the Sultanate owns the largest oil reserves in any country within the Middle East outside Opec (estimated at 5.5 billion barrels as of January 2012) and large quantities of gas. The daily average output of oil liquids in 2011 stood at 886,000 barrels of crude oil, said the report, which considers Oman a leading source of energy at the regional level.

However, due to the harsh terrain which calls for more advanced EOR, Omanís contracts with international oil companies are likely to be the most attractive in future. The Sultanate is encouraging the use of steam-injection based oil recovery techniques (EOR) in the oilfileds of Mukhaizna, Qarn al Alam and Harweel, in addition to the use of polymer-based EOR materials for the same purpose in Marmool and Nimr. The report also commended the Omani governmentís efforts to achieve its economic diversification target towards the Vision 2020.

According to the US report, the Sultanateís oil production increased by more than 24 per cent over the past four years, namely from 714,000 bpd in 2007 compared to the current output. In August 2012, the output rose by 2.35 per cent.

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