Fujairah will emerge as an important oil and trading hub in the coming years with the number of facilities coming up in the port, industry experts at the Tank Storage Middle East conference said.
“Fujairah will emerge as a hub for business activity. IPIC (International Petroleum Investment Company) refinery with a processing capacity of 200,000 b/d will be a game changer,” said Nizam Noorali, chief operating officer of Socar Aurora Fujairah terminals.
He said a number of projects are in the pipeline at the port. “LNG terminal is coming through. There will be facilities for chemical storage, bitumen storage, crude oil storage and crude oil pipeline connectivity to the port.”
He however said there are challenges for the expansion of the port. “The demand is there but land could be a challenge. Mountain demolition is an uphill task.”
Firefighting capability is limited at the port, he said.” Oil terminals build their own firefighting system which is considered sufficient for fighting fire for 2 to 2.5 hours.”
“Opportunities are great for oil terminal business but there are challenges which should be responded to at a greater speed. If the challenges are met, it would continue to grow.”
IPIC refinery is scheduled for completion at the end of 2016, according to IPIC website. The refinery will be designed to process a mixture of UAE crudes such as Murban, Upper Zakum and Dubai, and other regional and opportunity crude oils. Industry experts have said the project is delayed due to low oil prices and it is not known for how long.
A manager of terminals at Fujairah port said Ipic refinery will be the main input which will really multiple the volumes at the port. “Once the refinery is project completed, the demand for storage will increase. There will be a boom,” said Tarun Arora, general manager, GPS Chemoil.
He said the demand for storage has increased because of the contango. He said they have plans to expand but limitations on land availability have delayed their plans.
According to experts more than hundred ships can anchor at Fujairah port at any given time. The port zone has twelve bunkering licensed companies operating, 48 bunkering barges and more than fifty shipping agencies.
Source: Gulf News