Eni announced that it has acquired a 20% equity interest in ADNOC Refining, a subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), as part of a $3.24 billion strategic partnership agreement, according to a company statement.

The deal will increase the Italian company’s refining capacity by 35%.

The agreement sets up a new trading joint venture (JV), between ADNOC, Eni, and Austria’s OMV, with trading expected to begin in 2020. Eni will control a 20% stake in the new JV.

Eni and OMV will provide ADNOC with the know-how, operational experience, and support to accelerate the development of the trading JV, to optimize their systems and manage their international product flows.

ADNOC Refining has a refining capacity of more than 922,000 barrels per day (b/d) at Ruwais and Abu Dhabi-based refineries. Ruwais is the fourth biggest single-site refinery in the world, the statement noted.

Eni has been present in the UAE upstream sector since March 2018 when it was awarded a 10% interest in ADNOC’s Umm Shaif and Nasr concession and a 5% interest in the Lower Zakum concession. Subsequently, back in November 2018, Eni was awarded a 25% interest in the Ghasha Concession, ADNOC’s mega offshore sour gas project.