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18th December: Downstream news

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


After a year of delays, PetroChina’s US$ 6 billion refinery and petrochemical complex will start trial production in two weeks. The facility has a processing capacity of 200 000 bpd is the first in the southwest region of the country. The plant is going to process domestic crude as well as feedstock from Russia and Kazakhstan.

Czech Republic

Eni of Italy has announced that it is looking to sell its 32.5% share in the Ceska Rafinerska Czech refinery and the 124 Agip petrol stations to Slovnaft. The only other shareholder in the refinery is to be Unipetrol in 2014 after buying Shell’s take for US$ 27.2 million.


Strikes at the Total owned La Mede, Gonfreville and Feyzin refineries moved in to the fifth day of strikes on Tuesday 17th December. Workers belonging to the CGT union are sticking with pay demands despite the fact that workers at the Grandpuits refinery voted to end the strike as well as workers from other unions.


Petroperu is looking to raise US$ 2.7 billion to action refinery expansion plans. The company are seeking US$ 1.3 billion from international bonds and loans and US$ 1.4 billion from the local market. All funds will be focused on the modernisation and expansion of the Talara refinery to produce 50% more oil by 2017. The total project is expected to cost US$ 3.5 billion with Petroperu providing the remaining money after the above funds are gathered.


Russia is going to restart oil supplies to the Odessa refinery in the Ukraine after a three year halt. A new partnership has been formed between the countries after Ukraine spurned a trade deal with the European Union. During the first quarter of next year, Russia is expected to supply 750 000 t of oil worth approximately US$ 600 million.


Northern Tier refinery workers have voted to strike if the management makes cuts. The proposed cuts at the facility in St Paul Park, Minnesota could dramatically undermine the safety of operations at the plant as the management seek to cut jobs, wages and enforce changes to working conditions.

The Environmental Protection Agency has notified Chevron that it could face daily fines if it fails to address highlighted violations. The company was cited for 62 regulatory violations at the Richmond refinery in 2011. Chevron now has 30 days to provide the EPA with a detailed plan of how it will comply with federal regulations. If there are any problems with the plan, the company will face US$ 37 500 /y in fines until the alterations are made. 

Edited from various sources by Claira Lloyd.

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