Egypt is in talks with India’s top state-run refiner Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) to jointly build a $9 billion refinery and petrochemical complex in the north African nation, Oil Minister Sameh Fahmi confirmed yesterday.
“We are in talks with IOC to build a refinery and a mega petrochemical complex,” Fahmi said.
“We’ve already asked them to cooperate with the Egyptian General Petroleum Corp to prepare a report on the project,” he said by telephone from China.
The estimated value of the project is $9bn, the minister said.
IOC’s business development director, B M Bansal has said that the demand/supply situation and investment were yet to be worked out.
A detailed report on the commercial viability of the project would only be ready by mid-2010, based on which the Indian firm will decide on an investment, Bansal said.
A senior Egyptian oil ministry official said that EGPC is expected to form the initial joint venture with IOC in the first quarter of 2008.
“The final decision is likely to be reached before the end of next year…the two sides are very keen on going ahead with a project, but issues like finance and location usually take time,” the official said.
The Economic Times newspaper of India has reported that IOC and EGPC would build the refinery and petrochemicals complex near Gamasa or Port Said.

(Gulf Daily News)