Vietnam refinery operator plans USD84 MM IPO, eyes 49% strategic sale

MOSCOW (MRC) — Vietnam's sole refinery operator Binh Son Refining (BSR) plans to sell 4% of its shares in an initial public offering in November and to sell another 49% of its shares to strategic investors next year, its chairman said on Thursday, as per Reuters.

BSR, which runs the Dung Quat oil refinery, Vietnam's only operating refinery, would offer shares at 14,600 dong each in its IPO on Nov. 7, BSR chairman Nguyen Hoai Giang said. The company expects to raise USD83.6 MM from selling 4% of its shares in the IPO, Giang said, which would value the entire company at around USD2.1 B.

It is uncertain when the company would be listed. In Vietnam, listing and IPO are separate processes. The refinery operator's IPO is part of Vietnam's wider drive to privatize state-owned enterprises to boost performance. The slow privatization process has gained more momentum since a new government took office last year.

BSR also plans to sell an additional 49% stake to one or more strategic investors next year. Spain's Repsol S.A. and Vietnam National Petroleum Corp, or Petrolimex, are among companies that have expressed interest in BSR's strategic sale, Giang said.

Petrolimex and BSR on Thursday signed an agreement where Petrolimex would priorities buying Dung Quat's oil products, liquid petroleum gas and petrochemical products and exporting the refined products to Laos and Cambodia, the companies said in a statement.

About 17 investment funds have also expressed interest in BSR's stake sale, Giang added. The stake sale plan still needs approval from the government, which wholly owns BSR via state oil and gas group PetroVietnam, and Giang expected a decision to be made within the next three weeks.

Dung Quat refinery's full-year production this year is expected to reach 6.1 MMt, equivalent to about 122,000 bpd, nearly 20% higher than its initial target partly due to a tax cut on sales of gasoline and diesel fuel from the refinery.

The refinery has a total capacity of 6.5 MMtpy.

GS Caltex shuts heavy oil upgrading unit after fire

MOSCOW (MRC) — GS Caltex, South Korea's second-largest oil refinery, said it has shut a heavy oil upgrading unit after a fire mishap on Thursday, as per Reuters.

The blaze, which is now under control, broke out in the heavy oil upgrading unit or Vacuum Residue Hydrocracker (VRHCR), at GS Caltex's Yeosu refinery, located in southwest of Seoul.

GS Caltex has a combined 274,000 bpd of heavy oil upgrading capacity to convert fuel oil into more expensive and cleaner fuel such as gasoline and diesel. The fire hit the refiner's 66,000-bpd hydrocracker, the spokesman said.

No casualties have been reported, the spokesman said, adding that the cause and damage to the unit were still being assessed. He said it was too early to tell if there would be any impact on the refinery's operations.

A week ago, GS Caltex shut its No.2 Aromatics plant after a fire occurred at an electrical substation in the refinery.

GS Caltex, equally owned by GS Energy Corp, a unit of GS Holdings and US oil major Chevron Corp, runs a 790,000-bpd refinery in Yeosu.

Jacobs signs construction management agreement for Chevron refineries, terminals

MOSCOW (MRC) — Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. signed a Master Services Agreement (MSA) expansion amendment with Chevron Products Company to provide elective construction management (CM) services on an as-needed basis at the company’s refineries located in El Segundo and Richmond, California, Pascagoula, Mississippi, and Salt Lake City, as well as at various terminals throughout the US, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

In addition to providing existing engineering and procurement (EP) services, the MSA amendment enables Jacobs to provide Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) solutions to Chevron at these locations.

IPD is a project delivery approach that integrates people, systems, business structures and innovative practices into a process that optimizes project results, increases value to facility owners, reduces hours in the field and rework, and maximizes efficiencies through all phases of the project.

"As an experienced Integrated Project Delivery (IDP) provider of innovative end-to-end solutions, we will support Chevron’s facility and business objectives while delivering engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services at the company’s US refineries and terminals," said Jacobs Global Field Services Senior Vice President and General Manager Valerie Roberts.

As MRC informed earlier, Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. announced it received a contract from ExxonMobil Chemical Company to provide engineering, design and construction management services as part of a new 650 kTa polyethylene facility to be located at ExxonMobil’s Beaumont polyethylene plant.

Jacobs is one of the world’s largest and most diverse providers of full-spectrum technical, professional and construction services for industrial, commercial and government organizations globally. The company employs 50,000 people and operates in more than 30 countries around the world.

KMGI to expand petrol station network in Romania, Bulgaria once legal issues resolved

MOSCOW (MRC) — Oil refiner KMG International (KMGI) wants to open more petrol stations in Romania and Bulgaria and is on the lookout for acquisitions in central Europe once its legal problems are resolved, a company executive told Reuters.

KMGI is controlled by Kazakhstan's state oil and gas company, KazMunayGaz, but its main assets are in Romania as it holds a controlling stake in Rompetrol Rafinare, which owns the Petromidia and Vega refineries, and Rompetrol Petrochemicals.

The Petromidia refinery on the Black Sea was seized by Romanian authorities in 2016 as part of an investigation into Rompetrol's initial privatisation in 2000. KazMunayGaz acquired the company in 2007. Alexey Golovin, KMGI strategy and corporate development vice president, said the legal issues were making it difficult for KMGI to secure financing.

"The total amount of assets seized is USD1 B, which we perceive as excessive," Golovin told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday.

"This does not affect our day-to-day operations, but we cannot use them as leverage to acquire financing lines, which are like lifeblood for any company."

CEFC China Energy is buying a 51% stake in KMGI in a deal expected to go through in the next few months. It will be co-owner with KazMunayGaz and has committed to pour USD3 B into the group over five years, but there would be little incentive to invest before legal problems are solved.

Golovin said the asset seizure would be in place at least until the first court hearing into Rompetrol's privatization case, a date for which has yet to be set. A Bucharest court rejected KMGI's request to have the seizure lifted last year.


India set to unveil new biofuel policy in bid to cut oil, gas, coal imports -minister

MOSCOW (MRC) — India will soon announce a new policy to promote biofuels as part of efforts by the world's third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases to cut imports of fossil fuels like oil, gas and coal, a government minister said on Thursday, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The government aims to develop a biofuel economy worth USD15.6 B in the next two years, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan told a conference on renewable energy on Thursday.

India's top three state-owned oil companies have pledged a combined USD2 B to carry out research to develop biofuel technologies and the government has pledged to guarantee a return on their investments, Pradhan said. "The roadmap to lower crude oil imports is connected to biofuel," Pradhan said. India, the world's third-biggest oil consumer, aims to cut its crude imports by 10% by 2022.

New Delhi also plans to lower its carbon footprint by raising the use of natural gas in its energy mix to 15% in the next three to four years, up from 6.5% currently. The government has already asked state oil companies to set up ethanol plants at 12 locations over the coming year.

Energy consumption in India is expected to grow as the government aims for economic growth of 8%–9% this fiscal year through March 2018, against around 7% in 2016/17.

Indian Oil Corp, the country's top refiner, plans to enhance the capacity of its biofuel refineries to 100 tpd from about 12 tpd in the next two years, Chairman Sanjiv Singh told reporters at the conference.

IOC runs three biofuel plants with an investment of about 30 billion rupees and is looking to increase the number of such plants, Singh said.

India needs private investment in the sector and once the cost of production comes down, the country could see some private sector participation, Singh said.

Separately, transport minister Nitin Gadkari said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cabinet could soon consider allowing the use of alternative fuel methanol in shipping.