Pushing back the frontiers   

Orpic is in the process of building one of the best integrated refining and petrochemical sites in the world. Dr Hilal Al Hinai, General Manager, Corporate Support Services talks about the current status of the projects, in an interview with Muhammed Nafie
What is the current status of Orpic’s ongoing projects in Sohar to build one of the best integrated refining and petrochemical sites in the world? Will the economic slowdown have any impact on the execution of the projects?

Dr Hilal Al HinaiOrpic was established through the integration of three refining and petrochemical companies. Hence the challenge throughout the years has been to ensure safe and continuous business operations, build new business processes and company culture, as well as seek ways to provide growth opportunities to the company.

Despite a challenging and fluctuating market environment, Orpic has managed to operate on a profitable track, though reliability of assets has turned out to be a concern.


When is Sohar Refinery Improvement Project expected to be commissioned? And how is it going to enhance the capacity of existing Sohar refinery?   

Sohar Refinery Improvement Project (SRIP) implementation will overcome the constraints of Residue Fluidized Catalytic Cracking (RFCC) unit in the existing Sohar Refinery and will produce additional quantity (70 per cent extra capacity) of products to meet the growing requirement of petroleum products of the country as well as supply additional volumes to aromatics and polypropylene plants.

With SRIP, Sohar Refinery will add 82,000 barrels per day (bpd) to its existing capacity of 116,000bpd – taking the total capacity to 198,000bpd. This indicates a 70 per cent growth in fuel production – 141 per cent for diesel, 34 per cent for gasoline, 98 per cent for kerosene / jet fuel, 93 per cent for LPG, 159 per cent for naphtha and 56 per cent for propylene.

The project is scheduled for commissioning towards the end of 2016.

 When is Muscat Sohar Product Pipeline expected to be completed? And what are the saline features of this project?

Muscat Sohar Product Pipeline (MSPP) project will entail a multiproduct pipeline connection between Mina Al Fahal Refinery and Sohar Refinery with an intermediate terminal at Al Jifnain, as well as the pipeline connection, dedicated for aviation fuel, from Al Jifnain to the new Muscat International Airport.


Some of the salient features of the project include:

– First bi directional multipurpose oil products pipeline network in the GCC

– Pumping stations in Sohar Refinery, Mina Al Fahal Refinery and Al Jifnain Terminal

– State-of-the-art distributed control system will handle the pipeline network as well as the fully automated storage and truck loading operations.

The project is in the execution phase and is expected to be commissioned by the second quarter of 2017.
What is the status of Liwa Plastics Industries Complex?

Liwa Plastic Industries Complex (LPIC) is the biggest of the three strategic growth projects being executed by Orpic over the next four years. LPIC includes a steam cracker and its associated downstream units to utilise the refinery light ends and the C2+ from Oman’s natural gas in order to produce an additional approx. MT 1.2 mn of polymers annually as well as MTBE. The project has started the detail engineering with the 4 EPC contactors and is scheduled for commissioning early 2020.

How was Orpic’s performance in 2015? And what is your future outlook?

The consolidated revenue for 2015 was RO2.15bn ($5.57bn) and the EBITDA was RO111mn ($ 327mn).

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