Petromin Opens Blending Plant


Petromins new 250,000 metric tons per year capacity lubricants blending plant is now on stream in Saudi Arabia.

The plants startup was announced this week by Cellier Activity of ABB France, process automation division. Cellier engineered and supplied the blending plant to Petromin in Jeddah, including both batch and in-line blending technologies. The plants commissioning phase started in August and ended at the end of October, according to ABB.

Petromin Executive Vice President Sajid Saeed confirmed it is the same blending plant announced as a 100 million riyals (U.S. $26.7 million) project in late 2009. The ABB system is now fully operational, Saeed told Lube Report yesterday. The plant is on 55,000 square meters of land at the Saudi Aramco Industrial Zone in Jeddah.

The plant has 125,000 metric tons per shift per year blending capacity, according to Cellier. The 125,000 tons per shift is basically the same as 250,000 tons in two shifts, during a year, Saeed explained.

Company officials previously said key target markets for the new plant are the Gulf and Middle East/Africa regions. The plant will produce oils and greases for all sectors of the market, including automotive and industrial. Historically, Petromins business revenues have been split about 60 percent from the industrial sector and 40 percent from the automotive sector.

In 1970 Petromin built a blending plant in Jeddah, eventually expanding it to 15,000 mt/y capacity. The company shut down and relocated the older plant a few years ago. In 2009, Petromin decided to consolidate all production nationwide to a new facility at the same location of the old plant.

Petromin is owned by Advance Petroleum Services Ltd., a joint venture between National Scientific Services Ltd., a member of Dabbagh Group of Saudi Arabia, and Gulf Oil International, which is part of the Indian conglomerate Hinduja Group.

Hinduja is a trading, banking and energy conglomerate based in Chennai, India. Dabbagh is based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and has interests in industrial and agricultural businesses.

Petromin was formed in 1968 as a joint venture between national oil company Saudi Aramco and Mobil Investments, now part of U.S.-based ExxonMobil. The partners sold the company in late 2007 to the current owners.

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