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China, South Korea plan multibillion-dollar upgrade of Isfahan, Abadan refineries

Chinese and South Korean are planning multibillion-dollar optimization and expansion of two major oil refineries in Iran, reports said on Saturday.

South Koreans have undertaken to provide 1.9 billion euros for improving and optimizing facilities at Isfahan Oil Refinery, Shana quoted Alireza Arman Moghadam at the National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company as saying.

The deal to expand the refinery was awarded to South Korea’s construction giant Daelim Industrial Company last December.

The project, due for completion in 48 months, is to add facilities for the production of high value-added products to the oil refinery.

The plant currently accounts for supplying around 22 percent of Iran’s demand for oil products with a capacity to process 375,000 barrels per day of oil.

Under the deal, the South Korean company will be in charge of designing, equipping and procuring material, constructing and financing.

South Korea’s Eximbank signed a contract with Iranian banks in August to provide 8 billion euros ($9.4 billion) in loans for financing various projects in Iran by South Korean companies.

Earlier this month, Iranian and South Korean companies signed a contract worth 720 million euros to jointly build 450 rail carriages for use in suburban Tehran.

In August, South Korea’s SK Engineering and Construction Co (SKEC) signed a heads of agreement for a 1.6 billion euro upgrade of the Tabriz refinery in northwest Iran.

Managing Director of National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company Abbas Kazemi said then that Iran needed $14 billion of investment in total to fix and upgrade Tehran, Bandar Abbas, Isfahan, Tabriz and Abadan refineries.

Kazemi said Iran expected to sign oil refining contracts worth $8.6 billion with a number of Japanese, Chinese and Korean companies.

On Wednesday, China’s Sinopec Engineering (Group) Co. said it had entered into an engineering, procurement and construction contract with National Iranian Oil Engineering and Construction Company to upgrade phase II of Abadan Oil Refinery.

“The group will pursue approximately 6.86 billion yuan ($1.05 billion) of the total contract value,” it said.

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