Bidders queue up for Pak TRL refinery contracts

Karachi: Installation and start-up of the Pakistan refinery project has come a step closer with the issue of tenders for engineering and construction by the operators, Trans Asia Refinery (TRL) Ltd – and the successful completion of a health check on all critical equipment.

At least four international firms of consultants from Pakistan, India, the U.K and U.S were hired by TRL to study the engineering of different sections of the refinery, develop ‘basis of design’ plans and, ultimately, prepare Invitation to Bid proposals for various parts of the development.

Trans Asia Refinery floated the revised tenders on February 1st 2014, reflecting certain upgrades required meeting the new products specification – and the project has stimulated interest from around the globe. A number of companies are currently preparing their proposals for engineering, procurement and construction contracts.

When completed, the TRL plant will produce four million tons of petroleum products every year – all in high demand in Pakistan. Its output will include 80,000 tons of LPG, 455,000 tons of Naphtha, 410,000 tons of Motor Gasoline, 422,000 tons of Jet Fuel and 1,000,000 tons of Gas Oil – of which 630,000 tons will be treated Diesel. It will also produce 1,050,000 tons of Fuel Oil and 200,000 tons of Bitumen.

More than one hundred million rupees have been spent on the refinery since last year when TRL signalled to end the project delays with an announcement that investors decided to push the project forward in the interests of all parties and the people of Pakistan.

The announcement of “total commitment” to the Refinery gave the project fresh impetus and began a flurry of activity, starting with an essential check of major critical equipment such as reactors, pressure vessels, columns, towers, heat exchangers and coolers – all now given a ‘clean bill of health’.

A spokesman for TRL said: “All major critical equipment was inspected thoroughly by a world-class third party inspection company and found to be in good condition, as we were confident it would be. This is another significant step forward and, as far as we are concerned, it is now full steam ahead”.

The Trans Asia Refinery is a direct investment of Al Ghurair Investment LLC, a UAE-based family conglomerate and one of the most diverse industrial groups in the Middle East.

TRL’s CEO, Sultan Al Ghurair, said: “We promised last year that we were fully committed to this project and I think the progress we have made since then has borne that out. We have a thriving, long-term relationship with the Government and people of Pakistan and are delighted to be able to contribute to the economy of the country and the future prosperity of its people.”

The TRL refinery will create at least 350 direct jobs and several thousand indirect jobs for Pakistani workers. Government officials have welcomed the project which will reduce dependence on petroleum imports and also the burden of additional foreign currency expenses. It will also boost technology development in Pakistan.

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