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Global downstream news: 23 July 2015

Hydrocarbon Engineering,


It has been announced that work is due to commence on a new petrochemical plant that is being built in Ibeno, Akwa Ibom State. The US$1.5 billion facility has had its ground breaking ceremony which was performed by Goodluck Jonathan during 2014. The work will start as soon as the gas purchase agreement with ExxonMobil is finalised.

The African Development Bank has reportedly approved US$62 million in loans for the training of workers in Kenya’s emerging oil, gas and mining industry. These emerging employment sectors are likely to employ between 42 0000 and 98 000 people over the next 10 years.


Hanwha Cheimcal has announced that it has merged two of its chemical compound businesses. Hanwha Next and Hanwha Compound is to combine to become the Hanwha Compound and will produce polyethylene, polypropylene, PVC and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene.

The board of directors at Byco Petroleum Pakistan Limited (BPPL) have reportedly approved the possible merger of BPPL with its holding company Byco Oil Pakistan Limited (BOPL). Final approval of the merger is now needed from BPPL shareholders.

ICIS has been selected by the Shanghai Clearing House to provide price benchmarks for two upcoming petrochemical swaps contracts. Two assessments from ICIS, SM Ex-tank East China quote and MEG CFR China quote will be used for the clearing.


A second column for a reforming unit being worked on at the Tuapse refinery has been delivered. The reforming unit is reported to be aiming towards producing high octane gasoline of a European standard. This unit is part of Rosneft’s wide reaching investment and modernisation programme.

It has been announced that Hydrodec Group has entered into a long term lease agreement with Peel Ports Group. This agreement is for a 9 acre site in Merseyside, UK as part of a plan to build a lubricant oil rerefinery. This facility would be the first of its kind in the UK.

China Peace Petroleum Group has reportedly expressed an interest in purchasing the Lukoil Petrotel refinery in Romania. However, Lukoil has countered these reports saying that it has no intention to sell the facility. The original letter expressing this interest from China Peace Petroleum Group was reported by Reuters.

Middle East

A request to increase the budget for a new refinery in Kuwait has been granted by the Kuwait Supreme Petroleum Council. The original figure for construction of the Al Zour refinery was 871 million dinars. This has now been increased to 4.87 billion dinars following news that most bids to build the facility exceeded the original cost estimate.


It has been reported that production at the Motiva Enterprises owned Convent refinery in Louisiana has been cut back. The cut has been carried out due to an outage at the plant’s only hydrocracking unit. The unit has a processing capacity of 45 000 bpd.

Environmental groups and a US State Senator have reportedly filed court briefs against the settlement between ExxonMobil and the Christie administration. The briefs say that the judge should reject the SU$225 million environmental settlement as it is thought to be unfair, unreasonable and contrary to law and the public interest.

Edited from various sources by Claira Lloyd

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