Sri Lanka to restart refinery with oil cargo from Dubai

Updated 05 November 2012
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Sri Lanka to restart refinery with oil cargo from Dubai

COLOMBO: Ceylon Petroleum Corp. (Ceypetco) will resume operation of Sri Lanka’s sole refinery, a 50,000 barrels-per-day facility, after a 10-day closure, because it has received a cargo of 75,000 tons of crude from Dubai, officials said.
Sri Lanka’s decades-old refinery is configured to run on Iranian crude and has been scrambling to fill a shortfall after Western sanctions prevented it from bringing in the crude from Iran. The sanctions have hurt its economy by forcing it to spend more to import oil and oil products.
The refinery was shut on Oct. 26 after exhausting its supply of mainly Iranian crude oil, and its general manager, Susantha Silva, said it would be shut until the island nation received the Dubai cargo.
“We have received a 75,000-metric-ton crude cargo and everything is arranged to unload,” Silva said in an interview.
“If all goes well, we’ll be able to resume operations from tomorrow.”
Silva declined to comment on the origin of the cargo, but an oil ministry official said it came from Dubai.
“The cargo came from Dubai the day before yesterday and everything is now ready to unload,” the official said.
He said the island nation would receive an 80,000 ton crude cargo from Oman on Thursday, a 135,000 ton cargo from Saudi Aramco Nov. 13-15 and another 135,000 ton shipment in December.
Silva last week said the December shipment was from Abu Dhabi.
Exports from Iran, which is grappling with tough Western sanctions against its energy and petrochemical sectors, have fallen sharply as buyers struggle to pay for the oil and secure insurance cover for tankers to ship it.
Ceypetco has been having problems running the refinery at full capacity because alternative crudes such as Arabian light do not provide the proper yield, Silva said earlier.
The sanctions have so far compelled Sri Lanka’s $ 59 billion economy to spend an extra $ 1.2 billion on oil imports, Oil Minister Susil Premajayantha told parliament recently.
Sri Lanka has reduced imports of Iranian crude by a fifth this year but disagrees with Western sanctions that are punishing countries that depend on the oil, Foreign Minister G. L. Peiris has said.
The country is now in talks with Iran to find a suitable payment method, because banks dealing with Iran have also been targeted by Western sanctions. Iran has not offered any discounts on its crude, Peiris said.
Ceypetco’s Sapugaskanda refinery, on the outskirts of the capital, Colombo, was shut early in September also after damage to a floating pipeline at the Colombo port.


Saudi banks, Dubai shares give Gulf markets a timely boost

Updated 24 January 2019
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Saudi banks, Dubai shares give Gulf markets a timely boost

  • The Dubai index was up by 0.9 percent with Emirates NBD, its largest bank, adding 2.1 percent and its largest listed developer Emaar Properties gaining 2.2 percent
  • Nasdaq-listed DP World increased 0.7 percent after increasing its stake in its Australia unit

DUBAI: The Dubai stock market snapped a three-day losing streak on Wednesday, boosted by its financial and property shares, while Saudi Arabia rose on the back of its banks.
The Dubai index was up by 0.9 percent with Emirates NBD, its largest bank, adding 2.1 percent and its largest listed developer Emaar Properties gaining 2.2 percent. Gulf Arab economies are expected to grow at a slower pace than previously forecast, a quarterly Reuters poll of economists found, as oil output cuts, lower crude prices and weaker global growth put pressure on regional economies. Amlak Finance rose 2.2 percent after announcing a renegotiation of restructuring terms with its financiers to allow more flexibility in adapting to “current market conditions.” Nasdaq-listed DP World increased 0.7 percent after increasing its stake in its Australia unit.
The port operator will spend at least $250 million buying back some shares in its Australian port terminals unit. Saudi Arabia’s index rose 0.8 percent, with nine out of 10 banks rising.
Al Rajhi Bank was up 0.6 percent and Samba Financial Group closed 1.7 percent higher. Petrochemical investor Alujain added 1.5 percent after an update on the fire at its affiliate’s plant.
The company said it now expects the NATPET plant to start operating all units by the end of September.
The Egyptian blue-chip index was up 0.2 percent with its largest listed bank Commercial International Bank gaining 4.2 percent.
The Egyptian Exchange on Wednesday canceled all transactions made the previous day in local firms Sixth of October Development and Investment Company (SODIC) and Madinet Nasr for Housing and Development (MNHD).
The move followed SODIC’s decision against a takeover of MNHD and involved their shares being suspended on Wednesday as the bourse reset prices. Global Telecom Holding jumped by 10 percent before trading on its shares were suspended, pending a statement from the company after VEON Ltd, a major shareholder in the firm, said it was considering taking it private.