Egyptian Refining Company to commence on US$3.7 billion project

Oil_refinery_nightERC said the refinery could provide up to 10,000 new jobs. (Image source: Glenn Euloth)Having achieved financial close, Egyptian Refining Company (ERC) are to begin developments on a US$3.7 billion Greenfield petroleum refining upgrade project

The project, for which planning has been underway for more than five years and financing includes $2.6 billion in debt and a further $1.1 billion in equity, is considered to hold numerous advantages for the surrounding Egyptian economy, environment, and people.

ERC plan for the refinery to provide an excess of 4.1 million tons of refined products and high-quality oil derivatives annually, including more than 2.3 million tons of Euro V diesel, which is recognised as the cleanest-burning diesel fuel globally.

By establishing the infrastructure within the country it is expected that Egypt’s current diesel imports will be cut by 50 per cent, as well a $300 million generated in direct annual benefits as a result of avoiding transportation-related expenses.

Citadel Capital founder and chairman Ahmed Heikal said, “ERC is one of Africa’s largest-ever project finance deals, it is also a transformative development for the Egyptian economy. The financial close of ERC confirms to international investors and the global community that Egypt is open for business. The signal this sends is huge.”

ERC chief executive officer Thomas Thomason added, “To keep the lender group and all other stakeholders engaged during this period is a testament to the economic strength of the project.”

Environmental concern has been a priority for ERC.· In addition to utilising advanced and environmentally stringent technologies, such as ConocoPhillips, Bechtel, Axens, and KTI, the planned refining process is expected to reduce the annual sulphur dioxide emissions by 29.1 per cent, thereby improving the quality of the air in the Greater Cairo area.

Additionally, ERC chairman Abdelfattah Abu Zeid has announced that the planned infrastructure will provide substantial job opportunities for Egypt, requiring up to 10,000 employees during periods of peak construction.

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