MOSCOW (MRC) -- Exxon Mobil Corp is planning to spend more than 500 million pounds (USD650 million) to upgrade the UK’s largest oil refinery, Fawley, on England’s south coast, reported Reuters with reference to a spokesman.
The project at the 270,000 barrel per day refinery - representing a fifth of British refining capacity - still needs a final investment decision which is not expected before the second quarter of next year, Exxon said.
The planned upgrade, which would include building a new hydrotreater and a new hydrogen plant, would reduce Britain’s reliance on diesel imports.
"ExxonMobil is considering significant upgrades at its Fawley site to help meet demand in the UK market for high quality fuels," Exxon said in a statement.
"If approved, the project, which is expected to involve an investment of hundreds of millions of pounds, will ... allow the site to process a wider selection of crude oils, and will help secure future employment for 1,000 employees at the site."
A spokesman confirmed a report in the Financial Times that the investment, if finalised, would amount to more than 500 million pounds.
The upgrade will allow the refinery to refine heavier, sourer barrels into ultra-low sulfur diesel, the FT reported.
As MRC wrote earlier, in October 2017, ExxonMobil Chemical Company commenced production on the first of two new 650,000 tons-per-year high-performance polyethylene (PE) lines at its plastics plant in Mont Belvieu, Texas. The full project, part of the company’s multi-billion dollar expansion project in the Baytown area and ExxonMobil’s broader Growing the Gulf expansion initiative, will increase the plant’s polyethylene capacity by approximately 1.3 million tons per year.
ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world's energy.