The Government has agreed to raise the capacity at Dung Quat Oil Refinery from the current 6.5 million tonnes to 10 million tonnes per year in the next five years.

Nguyen Hoai Giang, General Director of Binh Son Petro-Chemical Co Ltd, the operator of the country's first oil refinery, said Dung Quat will meet 40 to 50 percent of the fuel demand in the country when the expansion plan is finished by the end of 2015 or early 2016.

Currently, the refinery turns out 6 million tonnes of oil products per year, meeting 30 percent of the local market's fuel demand.

With total investment of 3 billion USD, Dung Quat has produced a range of refined products including liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), kerosene, diesel, fuel oil, A95 and A92-grade petrol, and JetA1 fuel.

To accommodate the increased production capacity, Quang Ngai provincial authority has asked the Government to expand the Dung Quat Economic Zone where the refinery is located to 45,332 ha, four times the current area.

The zone will also be transformed into an industrialised city with urban areas and ports.

The feasibility study for the expansion plan will be completed by the Japanese contractor JPC by April of this year.

Preparations for equitisation of the refinery were going on, aiming to seek funds for the expansion plan, estimated at 1.2 billion USD, said Giang.

He said the staff will be comprised of Vietnamese only, who will operate and conduct maintenance service at the refinery by the end of 2011.

In addition to the expansion plan, Dung Quat staff will be responsible for human resource development for the future petro-chemical projects in the country, said Giang.

Crude oil from the Middle East will be added to the refinery's source of raw materials, which will come from Bach Ho Oilfield off the southern coast of Vietnam, he added./.