Essar preparing to bring down UK Stanlow refinery for big turnaround

16 August 2013 15:04  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Essar Energy is preparing to bring down its 296,000 bbl/day Stanlow refinery near Liverpool for major maintenance work later this year, the India-based energy major said on Friday.

Essar said that during the turnaround it would complete major maintenance projects, including a "re-lifting" of the refinery’s residue catalytic cracking unit, which is the largest of its kind in Europe.

The work is scheduled to take place in the second half of Essar’s 2014 fiscal year, which ends on 31 March 2014.

Essar added that it kept working to improve the refinery’s margins, which is "important given continuing volatility in industry-wide European refining margins".

In the fiscal 2014 first quarter, Essar saw Stanlow’s gross refining margin fall to $4.68/bbl (€3.51/bbl), from $7.53/bbl in the same period a year ago.

The decline was due to "generally lower industry margins", weaker diesel and jet prices relative to gasoline, and higher residues production relating to the stabilisation of the revised refinery configuration following the closure of the lubes plant in February 2013, Essar said.

The refinery’s throughput for the three months ended 30 June was down 2% year on year to 19.27m barrels.

Essar acquired the Stanlow refinery in 2011 from Shell. The plant, which is the UK's second largest refinery, is currently running at about 70% of its 296,000 bbl/day nameplate capacity, according to information on Essar's website.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Stefan Baumgarten
+1 713 525 2653

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