Showa Shell plans major shutdowns at Yokkaichi refinery in 2013

29 March 2010 18:04  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Japan’s Showa Shell Sekiyu plans to shut down a crude distillation unit (CDU) and associated secondary units at its 210,000 bbl/day Yokkaichi refinery for scheduled maintenance in 2013, an industry source said on Monday.

Showa Shell will shut down the 135,000 bbl/day CDU no.3, and the 75,000 bbl/day vacuum distillation unit (VDU) no.3, at Yokkaichi together with a 60,000 bbl/day residual fluidised catalytic cracker (RFCC) and a 38,000 bbl/day continuous catalytic naphtha reformer (CCR) for around 40-50 days.

The exact shutdown dates have yet to be confirmed.

Showa Shell will also shut down a 75,000 bbl/day CDU no.2 together with the 30,000 bbl/day VDU no.2 for around 40-50 days during October-November 2010. A gasoil hydrodesulphurisation unit and a gasoline unit will be shut down during the same period, the source added.

Showa Shell last shut down CDU no.3, VDU no.3, and the RFCC and CCR units at the Yokkaichi refinery from the end of May to the end of July 2009.

The Yokkaichi facility, which is located in western Honshu prefecture, is primarily a fuels refinery.

Showa Shell Sekiyu operates three refining complexes in Japan with a combined capacity of 515,000 bbl/day. The other refineries are the 185,000 bbl/day Keihin refinery and the 120,000 bbl/day Yamaguchi refinery.

However, Showa Shell plans to permanently close a 120,000 bbl/day CDU and associated secondary units at its Keihin refinery by September 2011 due to sluggish demand for oil products in Japan and tough economic conditions.

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By: James Dennis
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