Indonesia’s Pertamina fully extinguishes fire at Balongan refinery

Author: Pearl Bantillo


SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Indonesian state-owned energy firm Pertamina has fully extinguished on Wednesday afternoon the fire at its 125,000 bbl/day Balongan refinery which went on for more than two days, market sources said on Thursday.

It is now preparing to restart the refinery and should be able to supply propylene to customers in seven to eight days, which would allow Polytama Propindo to resume operations at its polypropylene (PP) plant in Balongan, they said.

Pertamina has yet to reply to ICIS queries on the issue.

Its main processing unit in Balongan, West Java was not affected by the 29 March blast and consequent fire, but site operations - including 440,000 tonnes/year of propylene production - were shut as a safety precaution.

The incident, which injured six people, occurred at past midnight on 29 March during heavy rain and lightning.

Pertamina had said that refinery operations are expected to resume in four to five days from shutdown, as soon as the fire at storage tanks is completely extinguished.

Polytama Propindo has shut its 380,000 tonne/year PP plant in Balongan due to feedstock disruption, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The PP plant, which relies on supply of feedstock propylene from Pertamina, is expected to restart around 9 April, they said.

Additional reporting by Jackie Wong

(Adds details on Polytama Propindo's PP plant)