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Weekend news catch up: Downstream

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


The Caltex owned refinery in Brisbane has been blockaded by 24 Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) protestors. The blockade is being held in support of industrial action taken by the crew onboard the Teekay tanker, Alexander Spirit. The protest is being held in response to Caltex’s early termination of the Alexander Spirit’s 10 year time charter which should be ongoing until 2019.


The Indian Oil Corporation South Oil Jetty has been inaugurated. The Indian Minister of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways held the ceremony. The jetty will enable the Paradip refinery to import crude oil and export oil products.


It has been announced that Kazakhstan will build a new refinery in the Mangistau region. This will be the country’s fourth refinery. It has been reported that the Kazakhstan government is considering constructing the plant with Iran as a partner.


KNPC has said that heavy smoke coming from the Al-Ahmadi Port refinery was due to increased gas production at the facility’s gas liquefaction plant. The smoke was also partly caused by the operation of the fourth gas pipeline at the site.

Saudi Arabia

It has been reported that in May, Saudi Arabia’s crude oil exports fell to a five month low. This is reportedly because domestic refineries increased their throughput and refineries in China closed for maintenance. 6.94 million bpd were shipped from the country in May.


Renewable Energy Group Inc. has started upgrade work at the Danville biodiesel refinery in Illinois. The work is anticipated to cost US$31 million and involves the addition of biodiesel distillation facilities.


PDVSA has said that maintenance work at its Amuay refinery will be completed in a week and a half. The planned maintenance is being carried out on the catalytic cracker and has followed the planned schedule.


The only refinery in Zambia has been offline since early last week. The 24 000 bpd facility was forced to close after it was damaged due to being fed highly acidic crude. An investigation has been launched into discovering which company imported and used the unsuitable crude oil.

Edited from various sources by Claira Lloyd

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