NATIONAL NEWS - The Mossel Bay Advertiser published an article online earlier this week about a tanker that had been in the bay carrying cargo for PetroSA, which had not been unloaded.
A reliable source told the Advertiser the cargo was a "wrong order", mistakenly placed by a senior PetroSA staffer.
He said it was condensate which was the wrong grade, so it could not be used at the PetroSA refinery, because the gas to liquid (GTL) refinery was "finicky".
Each day the tanker was in the bay, unloaded, it incurred demurrage costs of US$20 000 per day and when the article was written - on Wednesday, 15 July, the tanker had been in the bay for 18 days. The source told the Advertiser this was not the first time a mistake such had been made by PetroSA.PetroSA was approached by the Advertiser for comment about the the high demurrage fees incurred.
The Advertiser also posed two more questions to PetroSA:
- When will the PetroSA GTL refinery be up and running after it was closed temporarily on Friday, 12 July, after electricity interruptions necessitated the closure?
- What is to happen with the PetroSA platform, also called the Orca, at sea in the bay of Mossel Bay? How much does it cost per day to keep the platform there?
On Thursday, 16 July, PetroSA responded, thus:
"PetroSA placed a one million barrel order, despatched and stored at sea, that was split into three for processing between 25 and 30 days, based on demand.
"Due to operational challenges and space constraints attributable to, among other things, the tripping of the plant, which resulted in refinery downtime, the last cargo was not processed as planned.
"The first one was accepted on 4 May and the second on 2 June. The remaining cargo, currently at sea, will be received in the next few days. Another cargo of a different grade was received on 23 June.
Progress on restarting refinery
"Restarting the plant after an emergency shutdown caused by power outage normally takes about seven days. Commissioning activities commenced last Friday and much of the refinery was started up over the weekend and it is expected to be fully online today (Thursday).
Platform (Orca) operating costs
"The Orca is currently not in production and is in a laid-up state, close to the Mossel Bay shore, with minimum staffing, in compliance with its licence requirements. PetroSA is finalising plans on the future of the Orca and cannot divulge operating costs."
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