* Listing application filing sets ball rolling for May IPO
* Sinopec Engineering formed by consolidation of eight units
* Citic, JPMorgan, UBS managing IPO of about $1.5 bln (Adds details of engineering unit, underwriters)
HONG KONG, Jan 8 (Reuters) - The engineering unit of China's Sinopec Group, Asia's largest refiner, has filed a listing application for its planned initial public offering of about $1.5 billion in Hong Kong, IFR reported on Tuesday, citing three sources with direct knowledge of the plans.
The application could see the unit, called Sinopec Engineering (Group), list in the second quarter, most likely in May, said IFR, a Thomson Reuters publication.
Sinopec Engineering was formed last September, consolidating eight engineering and construction units of Sinopec Group, as the state-owned giant looks to expand its business overseas.
The unit is controlled by Sinopec Group and Sinopec Corp , which hold stakes of 2 percent and 98 percent, respectively, IFR said.
Citic Securities , JPMorgan and UBS were hired to handle the offering. (Reporting by Fiona Lau of IFR; Writing by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Richard Pullin and Chris Gallagher)