Historical Landmarks

BAFCO was established in 1985 to manage and operate , on behalf of it’s shareholders, Bahrain National Oil Company B.S.C. ,Caltex , Bahrain and BP Middle East Limited , the aviation fuel facilities required to service the Bahrain International Airport (BIA).
The facilities include the operation of the Aviation Turbine Fuel pipeline from the Sitra Depot where the product is filtered, stored and quality checked before release to the hydrant system for aircraft refuelling.


The history of aviation fueling in Bahrain dates back to 1932, when the first aeroplane (Imperial Airways) landed at Manama on an unpared surface. This piston engine aircraft, which was probably the first to land in the Gulf, was refuelled with motor gasoline . That same year, Imperial Airways obtained a lease from the Ruler of Bahrain to develop a landing strip at Muharraq.


1938 marked the commencement of an intoplane Aviation Gasoline service by BP. The fuel was received from Abdan in containers of 5 imperial gallons. After being checked for quality , the fuel was then manually pumped into aircraft tanks through chamois leather, which was used as filtration .


In 1943, a small depot was leased from Bapco and bulk supplies from Abdan started . This depot was located near the Muharraq Club and has since been abandoned. That same year , the method of transporting fuel was improved by means of transporting the fuel abroad barges to Bapco’s Sitra terminal where the product was stored and then re-shipped via barges to aviation depot at the Marine Depot in Manama.


It is believed that the first aircraft fuelled in Bahrain with Aviation Turbine Fuel , was in 1949.


In 1951, bulk aviation gasoline was received in the fuelling system by road transport from Sitra Terminal .



By early 1952, aircraft fueling with Aviation Gasoline had become a regular demand . Later in 1952 scheduled deliveries into aircraft of Aviation Turbine Fuel started.

In 1956, two tanks were built in the fueller depot at the airport ; one for Aviation Gasoline and the other for Aviation Turbine Fuel . In addition , two road tankers were received and commissioned to transport Aviation Turbine Fuel from Sitra terminal to the fuel depot at the airport.


In 1961, the storage depot at Arad and The Hydrant system at the airport were built .All product was transferred through an underground pipeline to the airport .The Hydrant system at the new Bahrain International Airport (BIA) was one of the first hydrant fuelling systems built by BP in the Middle East. On completion of the BIER and commissioning marketing .


In 1962, 12x12,000 imperial gallon capacity tanks were installed to meet increasing military demand . During the period between 1962 and 1968, sales of aviation turbine fuel increased rapidly necessitating the construction of a number of new tanks.


The world’s first scheduled supersonic flight landed in Bahrain on the 21st January, 1976. In keeping with the new supersonic era,Bhrain was selected as one of the main airports to develop and test new fuelling procedures.

1977 1978

The first direct link between the source of fuel supply (Sitra terminal ) and the Arad depot was achieved during 1978. Construction of the Sitra /Arad pipeline started in 1977 and was completed during August 1978.


With effect from the 1st 1984 Banoco on behalf of The Bahrain Government , started participating in the aviation sales market . Later in 1984 the fuelling operation at the airport was relocated at the request of the Civil Aviation Authorities. The operation and maintenance section were now accommodated on one site Northwest of the terminal building .


On 16th May 1985, The Bahrain Aviation Fuelling Company BSC (Closed) was formed to replace the old Joint Hydrant Operation and a Technical Service Agreement was entered into with AIR BP.During October, 1985 BAFCO took over the Sitra /Arad pipeline supply system , Arad Depot storage and the Hydrant operation at the airport.


During 1987 the mobile fueller and hydrant dispenser fleet were modified to enable the introduction of two man fuelling crews, resulting in improved utilisation of available manpower and equipment.

1990 1991

During the Crisis and War (1990/1991) BAFCO fully met all the military and additional civil demand for fuel. BAFCO received commendations from various military and civilian authorities for their outstanding service.


In 1994, BAFCO embarked on a programme aimed at achieving ISO 9002 Quality Assurance accreditation during the last quarter of 1995.


In March 1995, BAFCO moved to their new premised at the Bahrain International Airport . Administration, Operations and Maintenance functions are accommodated on one site for greater efficiency and productivity .

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