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Sinopec to complete refinery by January
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Sinopec Group will complete the construction of a 12.5 billion yuan refinery in Qingdao in East China's Shandong Province by the end of January, a move to further tap rising demand.


The project is designed to process 10 million tons of crude annually. It will produce 7.6 million tons of refined oil per year, a source with Sinopec told China Daily.


Annual sales revenue of the plant is expected to cross 30 billion yuan, said the source, who declined to be named.


Sinopec started construction of the plant in June 2005. It has an 85 percent stake in the plant.


Preparation work for the plant started in the 1990s. The project was approved by the central government in 2004.


At a company meeting last week, Sinopec President Wang Tianpu said work on the plant was going smoothly. It also helped to train a lot of experts for the company, Sinopec said on its website. But it did not say when the project will come on-stream. The source with the company told China Daily it would be January next year.


"The project will boost the company's refinery business as well as increase its market share," Sinopec said on its website.


Analysts said the project will boost domestic refined oil supply. China, the world's fastest growing economy, wants to increase oil processing capacity by 25 percent by 2010 to meet rising demand for fuels and petrochemicals.


PetroChina, the nation's biggest oil producer, is poised to increase oil-refining volume by nearly 12 percent this year, according to its senior officials.


The company is expected to process some 120 million tons of oil this year, Liu Hongbin with PetroChina told China Daily earlier.


In October and November, facing shortages, top Chinese oil producers Sinopec and PetroChina were running at full capacity and trying to draw on stockpiles as much as possible.


Earlier this month, the government gave the go-ahead to Sinopec to start with Kuwait Petroleum Corp the groundwork on an oil refinery and chemical project in South China's Guangdong Province.


The proposed ethylene plant in Nansha in Guangdong will produce 1 million tons of the chemical a year. The approval allows the partners to start feasibility studies on the project.


The Nansha complex, with a planned investment of $5 billion, would be the largest joint venture in China, exceeding the nearby Nanhai petrochemical facilities built by Royal Dutch Shell Plc and China National Offshore Oil Corp.


Sinopec this month signed a contract with the Iranian oil ministry on the development of the Yadavaran oilfield in southwestern Iran.


The initial estimate of the project's cost is about $2 billion. It will be carried out in two phases.


(China Daily December 25, 2007)


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