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Concluding the startup procedure that begun in December at its Geismar facility, Shell Chemical LP started production of the fourth alpha olefins (AO) unit. Total AO production at Geismar has increased to more than 1.3 million tpa, post the 425,000-tpa capacity expansion. The addition of new AO unit at Geismar has demonstrated the tactical value of its integrated downstream division.
Spanish engineering firm, Tecnicas Reunidas has secured an engineering design contract for ADNOC and Cespa’s joint project in Ruwais. The linear alkylbenzene (LAB) plant will also be the first derivative unit developed under the $45 billion-Ruwais downstream investment programme. An ADNOC statement read that the plant will manufacture 225,000 tonnes of normal paraffins per year and 150,000 tonnes of linear alkyl benzene per year.
Croatia’s multinational energy firm INA has announced that its largest refinery will undergo a planned maintenance from January to mid-April 2019. The plant, which is located in the northern Adriatic port of Rijeka, has a capacity of 100,000 barrels per day (bpd). INA also owns a 60,000 bpd- refinery in Sisak.
As reported by Reuters, Saudi Aramco and ADNOC’s prominent $50 billion refinery and petrochemical project in India has been delayed by two years. The proposed coastal refinery with 1.2 mbpd processing capacity will be built by RRPL, a JV between state-owned firms and Saudi Aramco and ADNOC. The project is scheduled for commission in 2023.
Indonesian state-owned Pertamina has signed up SK E&C and Hyundai E&C for the $4 billion Balikpapan refinery upgrade project. In the same media briefing, the state oil major also entered into a framework agreement with Oman’s Overseas Oil and Gas LLC (OOG) for the development of a $10 billion refinery and petrochemical complex in Bontang.
Technology giant, Honeywell informed that Azerbaijani state-owned SOCAR will deploy Honeywell UOP’s Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) technology at its Heydar Aliyev Oil Refinery (HAOR). Honeywell’s technology will enable Azerbaijan to meet the rising demand for Euro V standard transportation fuels. As part of modernising the HAOR plant, HoneywellUOP will supply two PSA units, controlled by Honeywell Process Solutions C300 distributed control systems.
China’s Caixin yesterday reported about the revival of a decade-old mega project between CNPC and Venezuelan state-owned PDVSA. The financial publication said that the CNPC-PDVSA JV refinery and chemical project will most likely commence operations in 2021. The $9.53 billion-refinery with a processing capacity of 400,000 barrels-per-day will be built in Jieyang, China. The project will incur 60% investment from CNPC, while PDVSA will contribute to the remaining 40%.
French supermajor Total has announced the restart of its Gonfreville refinery in France’s Normandy region. Operations at the 253,000 barrel-per-day refinery were disrupted due to a week-long strike that affected output and deliveries. The CGT union of France put off the on-going strike on Thursday evening. A Total spokeswoman confirmed the news, stating that the deliveries had resumed on Friday.
Exxon’s Rotterdam refinery will undergo several key developments to meet the stringent quality standards in base stocks manufacturing. The upgrade will be the final step in support of the full stream production in 2019. The developments will include new lab facilities with state-of-the-art equipment, implementation of ExxonMobil’s proprietary Global BPIMS, and so on. The improvements are in line with ExxonMobil’s pledge towards product integrity and reliability at the Rotterdam refinery.
If sources were to be believed, state-owned refiner, MRPL has inked a term deal with Iraq’s State Organization for Marketing of Oil (SOMO) to buy 1.5 million tonnes of Basra oil in 2019. MRPL, which runs a 300,000 barrel-per-day refinery in India, is seeking to diversify its crude imports. MRPL didn’t comment on the matter.
If sources were to be believed, RIL head, Mukesh Ambani is mulling plans of boosting the capacity of the world’s largest refinery complex in Jamnagar. If the proposition goes through, Jamnagar refinery will see an addition of new plant with crude processing capacity of 30 million tpa. RIL is fortifying its place in India where energy demand, according to IEA, is expected to more than double by 2040.
CEO of Suncor Energy Inc announced that unlike its rivals, Suncor will not reduce its crude output to deal with low prices. This is because Suncor Energy is isolated from the rising price discounts that are applied to Canadian oil by US refineries. He said, “The higher-cost producers are having to pull back because they're not making any margin on their last barrel. We're not in that circumstance.”
India’s Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) released its second quarter earnings. Mumbai refinery unit of the organization was closed by a fire which had a negative impact on the overall earnings. The profit of this quarter, 12.18 billion Indian rupees, was below the expectations of the analysts. The Q2 profit of this year halved the profit of corresponding quarter of the last year which was 23.57 billion rupees.
US downstream player, Phillips 66 yesterday reported 70.2% rise in its earnings to $936 million. The American multinational easily beat analysts’ expectations, owing to cheaper domestic crude prices which boosted its refining margins. US crude's discount to Brent extended to more than $10 a barrel, allowing refiners in the country to register a higher margin for third quarter.
Thai Oil has awarded the consortium of Petrofac, Saipem and Samsung a £3billion clean fuels project in Thailand. The project aims at transforming the existing refinery in the Chon Buri province into a facility that is environmentally-friendly. Under the contract, Petrofac will provide engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning (EPCC) services for over four years, which will also include adding new processing units. Petrofac will receive over £1billion as share.
BASF, world’s largest chemical producer, and ExxonMobil are conducting a full scale commercial demonstration of their jointly-developed solvent. The firms have chosen Imperial Oil’s Sarnia Refinery for this purpose. The amine-based solvent is aimed at fulfilling the stringent sulfur emission standards with greater efficiency. The solvent will allow refiners and gas processors to enhance capacity and reduce the operating costs involved with existing equipment.
Azerbaijan’s state-owned SOCAR is all set to start-up its new refinery in Turkey, next week. The $6.3 billion Star refinery will provide feedstock to Turkish petrochemicals firm, Petkim to help cut Turkey’s reliance on imported refined oil products. SOCAR’s refinery would have the capacity to process about 200,000 barrels of crude per day, estimated to produce 1.6 million tonnes of naphtha and 420,000 tonnes of xylenes, apart from other products.
Canadian oil firm, Irving Oil has reported a major incident at its Saint John refinery in Canada. Residents in the area witnessed fire and explosion at the refinery. According to CNBC, the Saint John refinery has the capacity to refine 320,000 barrels per day of gasoline, diesel heating oil, jet fuel and other petroleum products. More than half of Irving Oil’s produce is supplied to the United States.