June 8, 2017 / 9:52 AM / 2 years ago

IOC sets extensive maintenance shutdown plans for units

A technician opens a pressure gas valve inside the Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) group gathering station on the outskirts of Ahmedabad March 2, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave/Files

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Oil Corp has lined up an extensive maintenance turnaround plan for its refineries in 2017, sources with knowledge of the plan said, which could force the country’s top refiner to tap overseas markets for gasoline and diesel to meet rising local demand.

IOC plans to shut a 150,000 barrel per day (bpd) crude unit at its 300,000 bpd Panipat refinery in northern India and an associated naphtha cracker plant for about a month in July, the sources said, freeing up some naphtha for exports.

IOC also plans to shut a 160,000 bpd Mathura refinery for 15 days from Aug 25; its 120,000 bpd Barauni refinery in Bihar for about five weeks in July-August; and a 150,000 bpd Haldia plant in West Bengal of the country for about three weeks in November-December for a flare job.

IOC plans to shut the only crude unit at its 300,000 bpd coastal Paradip refinery in Odisha for about three weeks for repairs in October to enhance its capability to process tough grades, the sources added.

The refiner has already shut some units at its 274,000 bpd Koyali refinery in Gujarat for revamp and maintenance from June 1.

There is not likely to be any planned shutdowns in the first quarter of 2018, because state refiners normally do not plan maintenance in the last quarter of their fiscal year, when they ramp up runs to meet annual production targets.

The company may change dates for the planned shutdowns depending on local fuel demand and the turnaround plans of other refiners, the sources said.

No comment was available from IOC.

Reporting by Nidhi Verma; Editing by Tom Hogue

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