CNPC resumes crude oil supply from Xingang port after blast

22 July 2010 09:12  [Source: ICIS news]

SHANGHAI (ICIS news)--China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) said on Thursday it has resumed crude oil supply from tanks in the Xingang Port to Dalian Petrochemical Co after a shutdown following an explosion and oil spill on 16 July.

Operations at the crude oil terminal had not resumed yet, though the company started pumping crude from its inventory in tanks at 22:45 hours Beijing time (14:45 GMT) on 19 July at a daily rate of 45,000 tonnes, CNPC said in a statement on its website.

PetroChina subsidiary, Dalian Petrochemical, had received some 66,000 tonnes of crude oil by mid-day on 21 July and was gradually ramping up the operating rate of its 20.5m tonne/year refinery, said CNPC.

“We took emergency measures after the explosion last Friday and cut our processing capacity to cope with the disruption of crude imports, as the terminal at Xingang Port was closed for the clean-up of the spill,” a source from Dalian Petrochemical said.

“The shut down of the crude oil terminal had a substantial impact on the company’s production, as all of our supply comes from imports,” the source said in Mandarin.

However, the refinery’s oil processing capacity had dropped to around 45,000 tonnes/day – from the normal level of 55,000–60,000 tonnes/day – and would remain at that level in near term if operations at the crude oil terminal remained suspended, the source told ICIS news.

Local refinery Dalian West Pacific Petrochemical (WEPEC) also cut its oil processing capacity by 20% this month and had temporarily ceased exports of naphtha, jet fuel and methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) on the closure of the Dalian port.

A source from Dalian Port (PDA) Co, which operates the crude oil terminal, said workers were trying to disperse the oil spill, but could not give an exact date on when the terminal would reopen.

Operation of all the terminals in the Xingang and Dayaowan areas had been resumed, except for that of the crude oil terminal, the Hong Kong-listed company said earlier in a statement.

A pipeline at an oil storage depot belonging to CNPC exploded on 16 July, triggering off a fire at an adjacent smaller pipeline when a Singapore tanker was offloading oil, China’s Ministry of Transport had said earlier in a statement.

The explosion happened after a catalyst was added to a crude oil storage tank, it added.

Around 1,500 tonnes oil were spilled into the Yellow Sea, according to a source from CNPC.

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By: Judith Wang
+65 6780 4359



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