Oil major Saudi Aramco has extended by one month the bidding deadline for the construction of a new refinery in Jizan province in Saudi Arabia.
The proposed refinery will have a capacity of 400,000 barrels per day and is crucial to Aramco's plans of expanding its refining output to 3.5 million barrels per day by 2016.
Reuters quoted industry sources, saying that some contractors had asked for an extension to put their engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) packages in place.
Contractors will now have until the middle of September to submit their bids. Bids for the expansion of Saudi Aramco Lubricating Oil Refining Company (Luberef) in Yanbu will be opened on 1 September 2012.
Luberef is a joint-owned company between Saudi Aramco and Saudi Jadwa Industrial Investment and produces 500,000t per annum of oil lubricants from its two refineries on the kingdom's Red Sea coast at Jeddah and Yanbu.
The expansion of the Yanbu refinery is expected to double its current capacity of 280,000 tons per year.
An executive at Luberef told Reuters in 2010 that the expansion of the project is expected to cost $1bn and will be completed in 2015.