The Saudi Aramco Total Refining and Petrochemical Company (SATORP), a joint venture with France's Total Oil Co., will construct a 400,000-bpd full-conversion refinery with integrated petrochemical processing in Jubail.

When completed, it will be the seventh-most complex refinery in the world. Located in Jubail, the refinery will be the first producer of petroleum coke and paraxylene in the Kingdom.

Construction, engineering and procurement have advanced significantly. As of November 2011, 16.1 million safe man-hours were achieved on the project. SATORP has already hired 729 employees and has 350 apprentices in training at Saudi Aramco facilities and refineries.

After completing specialized training at the Institute of French Petroleum and at Total refineries, the first group of young engineers has returned to SATORP facilities to assist with the start-up. A second group has been recruited and begun similar training.

The 16-year financing for the mega-project won two awards in 2011 from Project Finance International and Project Finance Magazine.

The inaugural crude oil intake is scheduled for December 2012, and the refinery will be fully operational by the third quarter of 2013.