Basra Refinery

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Also known as the Ash Shaabiya refinery,[1] the Basra Oil Refinery (BOR) is located in the far south of the country about 545 kilometres (km) from Baghdad and 55 km from the Persian Gulf. Basra is Iraq's primary terminal point for oil pipelines and is also the site of Iraq's chief export terminal.[2]

The refinery began production in 1974[3] and was heavily damaged in the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war. The complex is owned and operated by Iraq's South Refineries Company.[4]


According to a leaked US diplomatic cable, "design capacity" at the Basra refinery in 2009 was at 160,000 barrels per day (bpd). However operational capacity was approximately 15 percent of this figure. [5] In other press sources there are some discrepancies in the capacity figures cited, with many sources claiming 140,000 bpd of production, and Arabian Oil and Gas citing a figure of 210,000 bpd.[6][7][8]

In July 2011, the US Trade and Development Agency signed an agreement with the South Refineries Company for a grant of $502,798 to conduct a feasibility study for the upgrade and rehabilitation of the refinery. The refinery's modernisation is intended to support the Iraqi Ministry of Oil’s goal to reach a capacity of 12 million barrels per day in production by 2020.[9]


  1. "Iraq’s Baiji Refinery Unit to Restart Next Week, Ministry Says", Bloomberg, 28 February 2011.
  2. "Basrah", Global Security, retrieved 5 January 2012.
  3. "Homepage", South Refineries Company, retrieved 5 January 2012.
  4. "Basrah Refinery", A Barrel Full Retrieved 5 January 2011.
  5. "Iraqi Refineries Present And Future", Wikileaks, 8 January 2009.
  6. "Iraq eyes upgrade for Basra refinery", World Tribune, 25 May 2012.
  7. "Shaw to Conduct Feasibility Study to Basra Refinery", Gulf Oil and Gas, 13 December 2011.
  8. "Top 22 Regional Downstream Projects", Arabian Oil and Gas, 29 October 2012.
  9. "United States approves grant for Basrah refinery feasibility study", US Embassy Baghdad, 21 July 2011.