$4 billion for new refinery in Karbala

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By Shaymaa Adel

Azzaman, November 1, 2012

The Ministry of Oil has allocated $4 billion for the construction of a new refinery in the southern Province of Karbala.

The refinery will take four years to complete and it will be built by Iraqi technicians and engineers under the supervision of a team of international experts.

“The Oil Ministry has earmarked $4 billion for the construction of a refinery in Karbala with a capacity of 150,000 barrels of oil a day,” said the ministry’s undersecretary for refineries and gas processing affairs, Ahmad al-Shamaa.

Shamaa said Iraq wanted to increase its refining capacity currently estimated at more than 500,000 barrels a day to meet predictions of a rise in domestic consumption of fuel.

Iraq was also keen to have a foot in the lucrative international trading in oil by-products, he added.

Shamaa said the ministry had plans to construct three more major refineries, one with a capacity 300,000 barrels of oil  the other two with a capacity of 150,000 barrels a day each.

Iraq is expected to add 650,000 barrels to its refining capacity in four years, taking its total refining capacity to more than 1.1 million barrels a day.