Ras Lanuf refinery and terminal

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Located on the Gulf of Sidra[1] about 370 kilometres west of Benghazi,[2] Libya's largest oil refinery came on stream in 1985.[3] It is part of a larger complex that includes petrochemical facilities. Its products are sold both locally and exported to the United States and Europe. The complex also includes the Ras Lanuf harbour,[4] one of Libya's six oil terminals.[5]

Capacity and production

Ras Lanuf has a production capacity of 220,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd),[6] accounting for well over half of the country's overall refining capacity.[7]

It is the site of three crude oil pipelines: Messla-Ras Lanuf, Amal-Ras Lanuf, and Defa-Ras Lanuf.[8] The refinery processes crude oils from Sarir and Messla, among other fields. A large portion of its output is supplied to power plants on the Mediterranean coast, while another part is supplied as feedstock to petrochemical plants nearby.[9]

Operations at the refinery were shut down in February 2011 as a result of the uprising and Ras Lanuf was taken over by anti-Gaddafi forces in August 2011. An attack on the refinery in September killed 17 people and damaged several small storage tanks, but the infrastructure was otherwise left intact. [10]

The refinery restarted output in August 2012 and briefly reached 190,000 bpd of output.[11] However in January 2013 workers at Ras Lanuf went on strike, demanding overtime pay and equal salaries for locals and foreign workers, taking the plant offline until the 30 January.[12]

Ownership

In March 2009 the refinery’s operator, Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC), agreed to a Joint Venture (JV) with a unit of Dubai’s Al Ghurair Group to invest US $2 billion to upgrade Ras Lanuf.[13] Each side took half ownership of a new company called the Libyan Emirati Refining Company (Lerco),[14] which owns the refinery and manages its operations.[15] Due to the instability in Libya in the subsequent years the upgrade plans had to be put on hold, but in December 2012 Al Ghurair stated that it had no intention of selling its stake in Ras Lanuf.[16]

Industry sources told Reuters in mid-2012 that there was a dispute between the NOC and Al Ghurair over payments for crude oil, which delayed resumption of operations.[17]

References

  1. "Energy Profile of Libya" The Encyclopedia of Earth 25 August 2008.
  2. "Gaddafi's forces recapture Ras Lanuf; rebels call for arms" Rediff News, 30 March 2008.
  3. "LIBYA - The Local Refineries" APS Review Downstream Trends, 9 July 2001.
  4. "Ras Lanuf Refinery" Downstream Today, 10 September 2008.
  5. "Energy Profile of Libya" The Encyclopedia of Earth 25 August 2008.
  6. "Ras Lanuf Refinery" Downstream Today, 10 September 2008.
  7. "Libya sees return to pre-war oil output in October" Reuters, 26 July 2012.
  8. "North Africa Pipelines map - Crude Oil (petroleum) pipelines - Natural Gas pipelines - Products pipelines" The World Factbook.
  9. "LIBYA - The Local Refineries" APS Review Downstream Trends 09 July 2001.
  10. "Dubai firm to restart Libya oil flow" The National, 4 October 2011.
  11. "Libya Ras Lanuf refinery on way to processing 190,000 bpd -NOC" Reuters, 24 September 2012.
  12. "Workers end strike at Libya's Ras Lanuf refinery -source" AlertNet, 30 January 2013.
  13. "Dubai’s Al-Ghurair to Upgrade Libyan Oil Refinery (Update1)" Bloomberg 10 March 2009.
  14. "Dubai firm to restart Libya oil flow" The National, 4 October 2011.
  15. "Ashurst advises NOC on another major joint venture" Ashurst, 16 March 2009.
  16. "Al Ghurair: No Plans to Sell Stake in Ras Lanuf" Libya Business News, 12 December 2012.
  17. "Libya Ras Lanuf refinery on way to processing 190,000 bpd -NOC" Reuters, 24 September 2012.