The problems that Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) has had in the past must not in any way be used to judge its future, the MD for TOR Isaac Osei has stated.
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.
“We recently completed our 8 year overdue shut down maintenance and this has reduced production losses from 7% in the past to just 1.2%. “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,” Isaac Osei stated.
Mr. Osei was addressing a number of Ghanaians and potential investors who expressed worry over a news item in which the Energy Minster, Mr. Boakye Agyarko said TOR would be turned into a tank farm after new refineries had been constructed in Ghana at the ongoing OTC conference in Houston Texas, USA, .
“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 by the end of the year. TOR, he said, has 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 the 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 was therefore emphatic that the scrapping of TOR does not form part of the strategic corporate plan of TOR.