Aramco JV HAPCO to Commence Construction of Major Refinery, Petrochemical Complex in China

A view shows branded oil tanks at Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia October 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo
A view shows branded oil tanks at Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia October 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo
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Aramco JV HAPCO to Commence Construction of Major Refinery, Petrochemical Complex in China

A view shows branded oil tanks at Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia October 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo
A view shows branded oil tanks at Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia October 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo

Saudi Aramco and joint venture partners NORINCO Group and Panjin Xincheng Industrial Group plan to start construction of a major integrated refinery and petrochemical complex in northeast China, Aramco said in a statement on Sunday.

Huajin Aramco Petrochemical Company (HAPCO), a joint venture between Aramco (30%), NORINCO Group (51%) and Panjin Xincheng Industrial Group (19%), is developing the complex that will combine a 300,000 barrels per day refinery and a petrochemical plant with annual production capacity of 1.65 million metric tons of ethylene and 2 million metric tons of paraxylene, said the statement.

Construction is due to start in the second quarter of 2023 after the project secured the required administrative approvals. It is expected to be fully operational by 2026.

Aramco will supply up to 210,000 bpd of crude oil feedstock to the complex, which is being built in the city of Panjin, in China’s Liaoning province, the statement added.

“This important project will support China’s growing demand across fuel and chemical products. It also represents a major milestone in our ongoing downstream expansion strategy in China and the wider region, which is an increasingly significant driver of global petrochemical demand,” said Aramco Executive Vice President of Downstream Mohammed Y. Al Qahtani.

NORINCO Deputy General Manager Zou Wenchao said the complex is a key project of the Group to implement the joint development of the high-quality Belt and Road initiative, promote industrial restructuring, and enhance the oil and petrochemical sector to become stronger.

“It will play an important role in deepening economic and trade cooperation between China and Saudi Arabia, and achieving common development and prosperity.”

As for Panjin Xincheng Chairman of the Board Jia Fei, he said: "The project is of great significance for Panjin to promote increasing chemicals and specialty products, strengthening integration of the refining and chemical industry.”

“It is a symbolic project for Panjin as it seeks to accelerate the development of an important national petrochemical and fine chemical industry base,” the chairman of the board added.



Report: US Ready to Reopen Oil Stockpile if Petrol Prices Surge Again

FILE PHOTO: A view of the Phillips 66 Company's Los Angeles Refinery (foreground), which processes domestic & imported crude oil into gasoline, aviation and diesel fuels, and storage tanks for refined petroleum products at the Kinder Morgan Carson Terminal (background), at sunset in Carson, California, US, March 11, 2022. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: A view of the Phillips 66 Company's Los Angeles Refinery (foreground), which processes domestic & imported crude oil into gasoline, aviation and diesel fuels, and storage tanks for refined petroleum products at the Kinder Morgan Carson Terminal (background), at sunset in Carson, California, US, March 11, 2022. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo
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Report: US Ready to Reopen Oil Stockpile if Petrol Prices Surge Again

FILE PHOTO: A view of the Phillips 66 Company's Los Angeles Refinery (foreground), which processes domestic & imported crude oil into gasoline, aviation and diesel fuels, and storage tanks for refined petroleum products at the Kinder Morgan Carson Terminal (background), at sunset in Carson, California, US, March 11, 2022. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: A view of the Phillips 66 Company's Los Angeles Refinery (foreground), which processes domestic & imported crude oil into gasoline, aviation and diesel fuels, and storage tanks for refined petroleum products at the Kinder Morgan Carson Terminal (background), at sunset in Carson, California, US, March 11, 2022. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo

The Biden administration is ready to release more oil from the US strategic stockpile to stop any jump in petrol prices this summer, the Financial Times reported on Monday.

Senior Biden adviser Amos Hochstein told the newspaper that oil prices are "still too high for many Americans” and he would like to see them “cut down a little bit further.”

Hochstein, speaking to the FT said that the US would "continue to purchase into next year, until we think that the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) has the volume that it needs again to serve its original purpose of energy security."

The Energy Department this year has been buying about 3 million barrels of oil per month for the SPR after selling 180 million barrels in 2022 following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The move was an effort to curb gasoline prices that spiked to more than $5.00 a gallon, but it also reduced the reserve to its lowest level in 40 years.

Earlier this month, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm told Reuters that the US could hasten the rate of replenishing the SPR as maintenance on the stockpile is completed by the end of the year.