Conrad Prabhu –
MUSCAT, OCT 23 –
The launch last week of a new storage and distribution terminal at Al Jifnain just outside Muscat Governorate, marks the rollout of a national fuel logistics system for the Sultanate, according to Orpic’s Spanish joint venture partner in the strategic vital initiative.
Compañía Logística de Hidrocarburos (CLH), a Madrid-based operator of fuel storage and transportation infrastructure in key markets across Europe, is a minority shareholder in Orpic Logistics Company (OLC), which was set up to develop and operate the Al Jifnain Terminal as part of the $320 million Muscat-Suhar Product Pipeline (MSPP) project.
Phase 1 of the MSPP venture, centring on the 170,000 cubic metre capacity Al Jifnain Terminal, was commissioned last week.
“We are proud to launche the first stage of such an important operation for the country, which will make it possible to transform its logistics system for oil products into a safer, more efficient and sustainable model,” said José Luis López de Silanes, CLH Group Chairman.
Equipped with as many as 16 loading bays, the new terminal has a capacity to load more than 600/700 trucks per day with products to be transported to filling stations across much of the Sultanate. The state-of-the-art plant allows for the loading process to be completely automated from the moment the road tankers enters the facility until the relevant documentation is completed, said CLH in a statement.
The Al Jifnain hub is supplied by two multiproduct and bidirectional pipelines connected to Orpic’s Suhar and Mina Al Fahal (MAF) refineries. The plant is fitted with the latest control, safety and environmental protection systems, and for its construction CLH has applied its extensive knowledge on the management of this type of logistics systems, the Spanish firm said.
In the next phase of its development, expected in the coming months, the Al Jifnain Terminal will begin supplying jet fuel to the new Muscat International Airport via a dedicated pipeline. Also making headway is a direct pipeline link between the terminal and Orpic’s MAF Refinery in Muscat.
“When fully operational, the new logistics system will supply over 50 per cent of the country’s fuel.
It will contribute to improving road safety and will provide a higher supply capacity of aviation fuel, as well as greater efficiency and sustainability, thanks to the use of the pipeline as a means of transport,” CLH added.
Conrad Prabhu –