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News from Canada and North America

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

North American refining
Flying J Inc. which has put its Big West, California refinery up for sale has confirmed that the sole bidder is Alon, the US subsidiary of Alon Israel Oil Co. Ltd. Alon have offered US$ 40 million for the refinery and are now likely to complete the purchase.

Valero Energy Corp. has announced plans to spend US$ 200 million on the gasoline producing unit at its St Charles refiner, Norco, Lousiana. The company hopes to improve the unit’s reliability and therefore reduce maintenance costs and time. The FCC unit has the capacity to process 100 000 bpd of crude.

Canadian refining
Winfield Resources is pushing through plans for the construction of an oil refinery in Mauritania. The Vancouver based company wish to construct the US$ 3 million facility despite warnings from the government that investor backing will not be easy to find. Winfield hopes to construct a 300 000 bpd plant in the area, however, prospects are not good as their current 20 000 bpd refinery in Nouadhibou frequently runs at less than a fifth of its capacity.

Canadian oilsands
Imperial Oil Ltd. has announced that its Kearl oilsands project is still on budget and target. C$ 8 billion worth of investment is being ploughed in to the project, which is now quarter of the way through. Production is expected to begin in 2012.

Total SA has announced that it has no further acquisition plans relating to the Canadian oilsands. The company constructed one of the largest holdings in the oilsands area however, it has no further plans and is even passing by the chance to purchase a stake in the Syncrude project as the company wishes to expand and develop its current oilsands projects.

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