Flash fire shuts down Kuwait’s Shuaiba refinery
The Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) managed to put out a flash fire in its Shuaiba refinery on Saturday, February 9. The plant was temporarily shut down to fix a heat exchanger, in which a leak was detected.
With a daily output of 200,000 barrels per day (bpd), Shuaiba is the smallest of Kuwait’s three domestic refineries. A KNPC official told Reuters Shuaiba will try to meet its export obligations from storage and KNPC's two other domestic refineries.
Another blast, at the Kuwait Oil Company (KOC)’s gathering center 15 in the Al-Rawdhatain region, left four people dead while rendering the facility half destroyed. Kuwait resumed production from the undamaged Center 23 at Al-Sabriya last week. It is now producing approximately 50,000 barrels per day (bpd), stated a KOC source.
The January 31 blast burnt down a gas booster station and a power station supplying electricity to the northern oilfields, which produce 600,000 bpd. Oil Minister Adel Al-Sebeih, who tendered his resignation after the explosion, declared that it could take up to a month to fully restore power to the northern oilfields.
Kuwait’s production decreased by 600,000 bpd following the accident, which is now being compensated by the Gulf state’s stockpiles. The state-owned Petroleum Corporation (KPC) said that the country would not be able to satisfy its LPG export contracts.
Non-operator foreign companies still have until February 17 to apply to take part in Project Kuwait, a seven-billion dollar scheme aiming to increase the country's oil production. The country’s crude oil production capacity reached 2.6 million bpd prior to the blast. It has plans to further boost crude output capacity to three million barrels per day by 2005. Kuwait’s output is derived mainly from its Abdali, Bahra, Ratqa, Rawdhatain and Sabriyah oil fields. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)