RIL to shut CDU, gasoline units in February

Last Updated: Fri, Jan 06, 2012 10:19 hrs

Reliance Industries will shut several units at its newer 580,000 barrels-per-day Jamnagar refining complex for a three-week maintenance in February, traders said on Friday.

The shutdown will reduce its appetite for crude and also cut back gasoline output, tightening supply of the motor fuel in Asia.

"Gasoline supplies are going to be tight," said a trader.

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"Not only will there be less coming out of India, but Taiwan has also cut back but demand from the Middle East has been firm recently."

Reliance will shut a 290,000 bpd crude distillation unit or half of the crude processing capacity at the Jamnagar complex, traders said.

Other units such as a 70,000 bpd coker, a catalytic reformer and a residue fluidised catalytic cracker or gasoline-making unit may also be idled during the February turnaround, traders said. A CCR converts naphtha into reformates used in gasoline blending.

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The company's spokesman Tushar Pania confirmed the maintenance, but declined to specify which units will be shut.

Based on Reuters' 2008 data, Reliance has a 110,000 bpd CCR and a 200,000 bpd RFCC at the newer complex, which analysts had said could produce 8 million-10 million tonnes of gasoline a year.

Taiwan's CPC will also be shutting a 50,000 bpd RFCC in February for a two-month maintenance, while Formosa will only restart a 84,000 bpd RFCC in the later half of January.

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Reliance, owner of the world's biggest refining complex, also operates an older, 660,000 bpd refinery at Jamnagar.

Traders said it plans to shut another 300,000 bpd CDU for maintenance this year but the schedule was not immediately clear.

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