In early May 2008, Total's executive committee and Saudi Aramco's board decided to move forward with a plan to build a 400,000-b/d full-conversion refinery in Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Initially, Saudi Aramco will own a 62.5% stake in the Saudi Aramco Total Refining and Petrochemical Co. (SATORP) joint venture and Total the remaining 37.5%. Both companies will own equal stakes in the joint venture once 25% of the company is offered to the Saudi public.
According to Total, the refinery will process Arabian Heavy crude to refined products that will meet the most stringent global product specifications for the export market (Far East, Mideast, and Europe). The product mix of the full-conversion refinery will primarily consist of diesel and jet fuels. In addition, it will produce 700,000 t/y of paraxylene, 140,000 t/y of benzene, and 200,000 t/y of polymer-grade propylene. Both Saudi Aramco and Total will share the marketing of the refinery's products.
Total said the Jubail refinery will benefit from its proximity to the Arabian Heavy crude supply system and from nearby port, power, and water facilities in the Jubail industrial city.
On June 23, 2008, Total announced that invitations-to-bid for the project's construction had just been released. All bid packages are set to be awarded during the first quarter of 2009.
In a May 16,2008, Dow Jones Newswires article, Total Chief Executive Christophe de Margerie said that the project would cost in excess of $10 billion. He would not be more specific, but this latest estimate is significantly greater than a 2006 estimate of $6 billion.
In January 2009, a spokesman for the venture said that SATORP wants bidders to cut at least $1.2 billion from costs as a result of the global economic downturn. Given the downturn, SATORP could save more than 10 percent of the original $12 billion projected cost.
In July 2009, Technip announced that it had won two lump-sum turnkey contracts for (a) the hydro and catalytic cracking conversion process units and (b) some of the utility units as well as the interconnecting network and process control system of the entire refinery. The contracts are scheduled for completion during the second quarter of 2013.
On June 24, 2010, SATORP signed the finance documents for $8.5 billion of senior project finance facilities that have been secured for the Jubail refinery. The finances include $4.01 billion from the Public Investment Fund and Export Credit Agencies and $4.49 billion from commercial financial institutions.