Sonatrach Buys Italian Refinery In Bid To Plug Products Shortfall

In buying Exxon’s 190,000 b/d Sicily refinery, Algeria’s Sonatrach is admitting that plans to end products imports by beefing up its domestic fleet are going nowhere fast.

Algerian state oil giant Sonatrach on 9 May agreed to pay an undisclosed sum for Exxon’s 190,000 b/d (9.5mn t/y) Augusta refinery in Sicily.

Sonatrach’s first ever overseas downstream purchase “will be integrated directly into Sonatrach’s refinery system,” the company says, adding that it envisages the plant will process Algeria’s light sweet Saharan Blend crude together with residual fuel oil from Sonatrach’s largest current refinery, the 16.5mn t/y Skikda plant. “It will be able to treat the products that are currently in surplus in Algeria, with a view to supplying back to Algeria products such as gasoline for which there is a shortage,” Sonatrach says.


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