May 8, 2019 / 8:42 AM / 3 months ago

MRPL to operate plant at 50 percent capacity

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India’s Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd will operate its 300,000 barrels-per-day refinery in southern India at about 50 percent capacity from Thursday due to water shortage, Managing Director M Venkatesh said.

“We are maximising sewage water to sustain the operation to an extent possible,” Venkatesh said on Wednesday.

The refinery has three crude units. A 60,000 bpd crude unit and some secondary units are already shut for routine maintenance, Venkatesh said, adding that his firm will shut another 96,000 bpd crude unit and a hydrocracker from Thursday.

MRPL is trying to keep the third crude unit of 142,000 bpd capacity operating for at least a month. The crude unit normally operates at a rate of about 160,000 bpd.

MRPL will meet all its commitments for fuel supply despite shutdown of half of its crude-processing capacity, Venkatesh added.

The company supplies oil products mostly to meet fuel demand in southern India.

“Considering the acute shortage of fresh water in the river Nethravathi, in absence of summer showers, MRPL Refinery Complex process units are under partial shutdown as a force majeure,” MRPL said in a stock exchange filing on Wednesday.

Reporting by Nidhi Verma, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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