HOVENSA refinery to shut units, slash capacity 30% to 350,000 bbl/day

26 January 2011 18:47  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS)--The HOVENSA refinery in St Croix (US Virgin Islands) will permanently shut some older units to reduce its processing capacity by 30% to 350,000 bbl/day, stakeholder Hess said on Wednesday.

Hess said the reconfiguration of the refinery was expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2011. It would not affect the refinery’s coker or the fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) unit, Hess added. 

The 500,000 bbl/day HOVENSA refinery, one of the largest in the Americas, is a joint venture between Hess and Venezuela’s state oil and petrochemicals major Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PdVSA).

HOVENSA interim chief operating officer John George said by eliminating some older, smaller process units, the refinery was expected to improve its competitiveness at time when the refining industry was facing difficult economic conditions.

Hess CEO John Hess added: “We expect this action will reduce HOVENSA’s operating costs and capital expenditures and make it a more competitive and efficient refinery producing a greater percentage of higher margin products.”

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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