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Early May European downstream update

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


Petroplus is in the process of restarting units at its Petit Couronne refinery after a planned outage shut the plant. Petroplus shut the plant's crude distillation unit in mid-March but then proceeded to stop the rest of the plant because of low refining margins. Operations are due to restart in mid-May.


BP has welcomed Rosneft as its new partner in its German refining joint venture, Ruhr Oel GmbH, as of May 1 2011. This follows the completion of the deal announced last October in which BP’s existing partner, PdVSA of Venezuela, agreed to sell its 50% interest in the joint venture to Rosneft.

A group of investors, including a Saudi Arabian trust, is reportedly interested in purchasing the Wilhelmshaven oil refinery, put up for sale by US group ConocoPhillips. ConocoPhillips stated in July 2010 that it would either sell the 260 000 bpd refinery or turn it into an oil distribution terminal as part of its strategy of cutting downstream operations.


Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has pledged US$ 10.8 billion in investment for modernising refineries and building new plants in southern Russia, following petrol shortages. Putin also accused oil companies of a ‘conspiracy’ to force up gasoline prices, as the world's largest oil producer struggles to combat the shortfall. Last week the government raised gasoline export duties by 44% to keep fuel in the domestic market after pumps ran out of fuel in some regions and shortages spread to Moscow and St Petersburg.

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