Govt explains indeni sudden closure

 

INDENI Petroleum Refinery in Ndola will today resume operations after it temporally shut down last week to facilitate the shipment of the first consignment of 90 0000 tonnes of fuel from the new supplier Gunvor Group of Russia according to PF government controlled Times of Zambia.

Ministry of Energy Permanent secretary George Zulu yesterday confirmed that Indeni which went on a sudden shut down Monday last week would today start refining crude oil into various petroleum products.

Mr Zulu said the operations at Indeni were affected by the unexpected delay in the crude oil transfer process from the cargo ship to the TAZAMA installations in Dar-es-salaam.

“The ship arrived on the 10 th of this month and it started discharging mid this week and it is expected to finish discharging today and immediately the pipeline will start delivering to Indeni,” he said.

Mr Zulu said despite the delay caused by the transfer process everything was now okay and the supply of fuel would continue to be stable and that there was no need for the business community, motorists and commuters to be in a state of panic.

He said as of yesterday, the country has 13million litres of petrol able to last for 13 days and diesel which would last for the next six days.

Previously Independent Petroleum Group (IPG) of Kuwait used to supply fuel to Zambia but the Government has now engaged new suppliers of crude oil Gunvor Group and Trafigura.

The 90, 000 metric tonnes of fuel which would today start being refined at Indeni was expected to be consumed within the next 45-days.

Mr Zulu said Government had made arrangements for the supply of another consignment of crude oil from its supplier before the end of January.

Mr Zulu explained that measures were being put in place to ensure that the fuels reserve tanks were restocked after Indeni resumes operations today.

He said when Indeni resumes operations today the Government would see to it that Lusaka fuel tanks and other similar facilities dotted around the country have fuel stocks lasting for 20 days.

He said the country would continue having normal fuel supplies.

And the permanent secretary has refuted reports that an acute shortage of fuel has hit Livingstone.

He said the failure by an oil marketing company PUMA Energy to deliver its supply to local dealers due to some outstanding issue was being mistaken for a shortage.

He advised business houses in Livingstone and residents who were PUMA clients to start buying their fuel from Total and Kobil which had sufficient supplies of the commodity.

Times of Zambia

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