The problems that Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) has had in the past must not in any way be used to judge its future, the Managing Director of the company, Mr Isaac Osei has said.
According to him, TOR’s major problems were the production losses it recorded in the past and the frequent break down of the plants, a matter which has been resolved after the Refinery embarked on its recent shut down maintenance which it had missed in the last eight years.
“We recently completed our eight years overdue shut down maintenance and this has reduced production losses from 7 per cent in the past to just 1.2 per cent.
“We have started with pre-start up processes of the RFCC which will be in production by next week. I would like to add that the Refinery is in much better place than it used to be in the past” Mr Osei stated.
Mr. Osei was addressing a number of Ghanaians and potential investors at the ongoing Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston, Texas where the Energy Minster, Mr. Boakye Agyarko had stated the Tema Oil Refinery would be turned into a tank farm after new refineries had been constructed in Ghana.
“I plan to engage the Minister more on this because, surely, the Minister’s argument that the plants at TOR were constructed in 1963 and so must be scrapped is hard to accept since many refineries which were built many years before the TOR hydroskimming plant are still working effectively in other countries. I am of the view that the two plants at TOR could still be operated effectively and efficiently for many years to come, particularly when the RFCC, the cash cow was constructed only in 2004”
Mr Osei emphasized that since TOR generates its own income, the TOR Board and management owe it a duty to make the plant viable and sustain about one thousand hard working engineers, technicians and other professionals working at the refinery.
The TOR MD also said the refinery would restore its full capacity to 45000 bpsd when the furnace that exploded in January 2017 has been replaced with a new one b y the end of the year. We have also acquired a new 120 ton /hr Boiler to take care of the power generation needs of the refinery.
Mr Osei further revealed that the company is in talks with its technical partners with a view to reducing thew sulfur content of its products within the time frame set by the African Refiners Association and that of the Ghana Standards Board, insisting that there exists a synergy between TOR’s plan to construct a new 100,000 bpsd refinery and the existing 45000 bpsd. He ended by stating categorically that scrapping of TOR does not form part of the strategic corporate plan of TOR.