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Europe and Asia downstream news: 7th April 2014

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


Murphy Oil has announced that it is ‘entering into a period of consultation’, regarding the future of its crude oil refinery in Milford Haven, Wales, implying that the refinery may cease operation following failure to sell.

Talks have opened with 400 staff who fear their jobs will go.

Unite Union said that the UK government should intervene to protect workers and help the country meet its energy needs.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change said it stood ready to help Murco in efforts to find a buyer.


Maire Tecnimont has been awarded two contracts by Total for the implementation of the refinery off gas project (ROG) at Total’s Antwerp refinery.

The ROG project is aimed at recovering significant volumes of valuable hydrocarbons that are currently burnt as fuel gas and at processing such streams in the existing naphtha cracker.


Ukraine’s interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyukhas declared the announcement of a massive price increase by Russia’s Gazprom as ‘absolutely unacceptable’.

The Gazprom increase is equivalent to roughly 80% over the previous year’s costs.

Ukraine officials are calling ‘emergency talks’ with the EU, in an attempt to arrange heavily subsidized natural gas to replace Gazprom.


Laffan Refinery’s diesel hydrotreater (DHT) project recently celebrated 5 million man hours without lost time incident (LTI), a significant safety milestone.


Japan’s total bunker fuel supply from refiners is expected to decline to an average 310 000 – 320 000 t/month in fiscal year 2014 – 15, from 330 000 t/month in the previous fiscal year, amid a reduction in refining capacities to comply with government regulations.

Idemitsu Kosan sold a total 60 000 – 70 000 t/month of bunker fuel from its Tokuyama refinery in Western Japan and Chiba refinery in Tokyo Bay for fiscal year 2013 -14. This is expected to fall to 50 000 t/month from April 2014, due to a cut in its refining capacity.

Kyokuto Petroleum Industries has cut its bunker fuel supply from 20 000 – 25 000 t/month to 15 000 – 20 000 t/month from April 2014, also because of refining capacity reduction.

South Korea

S-Oil Corp has said that approximately 20 000 bbls of crude oil have leaked from a storage tank at its Onsan refinery at Ulsan but its operations were not affected.

Edited from various sources by Emma McAleavey.

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