The Financial Express

Eastern Refinery Limited shut for overhauling

Eastern Refinery Limited shut for overhauling

Bangladesh's lone crude oil refinery Eastern Refinery Ltd (ERL) remained closed over the past one week as part of its regular renovation.

The overhaul may continue until mid-December to make it ready to refine around 1.60-million tonnes during the next calendar year 2022, says a senior ERL official.

The amount is 6.66 per cent higher than its installed capacity, he adds.

The ERL, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the state-run Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC), will be kept operational all the year round to attain the maximum crude-refining target.

Normally, the official says, the refinery maintains operations for around 330 days in a year.

It targets to refine higher-than-expected crude mainly to do a test run of the country's maiden single point mooring (SPM), which is due for commission next year.

The refinery will import an estimated 1.0-million tonnes of crude oil for the SPM, according to the official.

The ERL was established in 1968 in the port city of Chattogram having the capacity to refine 1.50-million tonnes of crude oil for 30 years of its economic life.

Despite expiry of the lifespan, the refinery is still in operation for the unavailability of another such facility in the country.

Officials said a consortium of three French companies, led by Technip, had installed the ERL.

Technip is currently in talks to build a new refinery near the ERL's existing unit with intent to refine 3.0-million tonnes per year.

Engineers India Limited has been acting as the project management consultant to implement the second unit of the ERL, he said.

The BPC in November 2016 inked a memorandum of understanding with Technip in Dhaka over building the new refinery.

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