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Indian-Omani group strikes $3.85 bln deal to build Sri Lanka oil refinery

COLOMBO, March 19 (Reuters) - India’s Accord Group and Oman’s Ministry of Oil and Gas have signed a $3.85 billion deal to build an oil refinery in Sri Lanka, the biggest single pledge of foreign direct investment ever made in the country.

Sri Lankan officials said the 200,000 barrel-per-day refinery will be built on 585 acres near the site of the new Hambantota international port and a related industrial zone on the nation’s southern coast.

The refinery, construction of which is expected to begin on March 24 and be completed in 44 months, is expected to produce 9 million metric tonnes of refined products a year for export from the Hambantota port, which serves the busiest East-West shipping route. (Additional reporting by Jessica Jaganathan in Singapore and Nidhi Verma in New Delhi; Edited by Martin Howell and Jan Harvey)

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