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Business Times (Malaysia): Refinery capacity

Published: May 09, 2007

SHELL Refining Co Bhd, the listed unit of Shell Malaysia, aims to operate its refinery in Port Dickson at 87 per cent of capacity this year, ahead of a planned maintenance shutdown in 2008.

Last year, the company achieved a record utilisation rate of 90.6 per cent compared with 76.2 per cent in 2005. The plant processes crude oil into products like diesel and petrol.

Its chairman Saw Choo Boon said he was confident of achieving the target for this year as there would not be any major shutdowns until 2008.

“It is very difficult (to determine the level of utilisation rate), but our target is to go as high as possible,” Saw told reporters after Shell Refining’s annual general meeting in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

He explained that the refinery will undergo a 40-day statutory shutdown on its long residue catalytic cracker by next year.

The plant shutdown will cut the company’s production of diesel and petrol as well as reduce its crude oil purchasers before the closure. In 2005, the plant was shut down for 28 days.

According to Saw, Shell Refining successfully processed 8.2 million barrels of crude oil and feedstock and sold 10 million barrels of products in the first quarter of this year.

He said the refinery processed between 29 per cent and 31 per cent of Middle East heavy crudes, 37 per cent to 48 per cent of far East heavy crudes, and 21 per cent to 34 per cent of Malaysian light crudes.

“The decision on which crude we produce depends on the relative economic attractiveness. The flexibility to vary the crude feedstock and product output is important for the company,” he added.


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