Petrobras has announced plans to close its refinery on the Japanese island of Okinawa.
"Petrobras informs that the company has decided to start the plan to withdraw from Okinawa,” the Brazilian energy giant said in a statement. The plan calls for the closure of refining activities at Petrobras’ Nishihara refinery.
The company previously expressed interest in selling its Nansei Sekiyu subsidiary, which operates the 100 000 bpd Nishihara refinery on Okinawa, in 2011. However, no sale ever materialised; industry insiders noted that there is little interest in such a small refinery that processes only expensive crude for the local market, particularly when fuel demand is decreasing.
Petrobras will maintain close collaboration with the Japanese trade ministry and continue operating the related marine terminal to maintain fuel supplies to Okinawa until the plan for withdrawal is completed. "Throughout the process, Petrobras [is] committed to the people of Okinawa and its local work force, [and] will continue to act in a responsible manner in alignment with the best practices of social and environmental responsibility," the company said.
Edited from various sources by Rosalie Starling
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