Catalytic cracking unit back on line at damaged Kuwaiti plant

The 31,000 b/d fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) unit at the Al Ahmadi oil refinery in Kuwait run by the Kuwait National Petroleum Co. (KNPC) is back on line, the country's official news agency has reported.


KUWAIT�The 31,000 b/d fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) unit at the Al Ahmadi oil refinery in Kuwait run by the Kuwait National Petroleum Co. (KNPC) is back on line, the country's official news agency reported. The 440,000 b/d refinery had been severely damaged in a gas-leak explosion June 25 (OGJ Online, June 28, 2000) in which six workers were killed and scores of others injured. Kuwaiti officials said repairs could take 6 months to complete and would cost an estimated $325 million.

KNPC said the FCC unit produces chemicals needed for producing gasoline and polypropylene.

The statement, carried by the Kuwaiti News Agency (KUNA), said that in addition to the FCC unit, the gas liquefaction unit, the shipping pumps, and the pumps that feed fuel oil and crude to Kuwait's power stations had all been reactivated.

Meanwhile, KUNA quoted the head of Kuwait's higher oil council, Sheik Sabah al Ahmed, as saying that a number of state-owned gasoline stations in the country would be sold to the private sector.

He said the council wanted to reinvigorate the private sector, but did not say how many of the 80 stations in Kuwait would be sold.

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