Fluor tie-up to build $1bn Mexican diesel refinery

Phase two of the Madero Clean Diesel Refinery project can move forward as planned after being approved by Pemex.

A tie-up between Fluor Corporation and Empresas ICA is set to develop the $1 billion Madero Clean Diesel Refinery project in Tamaulipas, Mexico. 

The announcement from Fluor ICA follows approval by Pemex Transformacion Industrial (Pemex), Mexico's state-owned petroleum company, which cleared the way for the design, engineering and construction phase of the project to commence. 

The project will be financed through $500 million contributions by each of the joint venture partners. Fluor reported booking its contribution in Q4 2015.

The funds will be used to develop two 25,000-barrel-per-day diesel hydrodesulfurisation trains and associated facilities, according to an ICA Fluor release. Included in the project scope are the installation of new hydrogen, sulfur recovery and sour water treatment plants; the revamp of the existing diesel hydrodesulfurisation unit; and, the coordination with offsites and utilities to integrate the new production facility with the existing refinery.

The Madero expansion is part of Pemex's modernisation and clean fuels programmes. It is also part of an initiative to lower the sulfur content in Mexican diesel. 

“Fluor and ICA Fluor remain fully committed to Pemex and our other clients in the Mexican market,” Fluor chief operating officer Peter Oosterveer said. The project is expected to reach completion by the close of the first half of 2018.