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Malacca unit gets restarted.

The crude distillation unit of the Malacca refinery on Malaysia's west coast, owned by state energy firm Petronas and US oil firm Phillips 66, has restarted after being shut since mid-June, industry sources said.

The unit, which processes 100,000 barrels per day (bpd), was shut after a fire at the refinery and was expected to be restarted by early July. But the refinery has been hit with "technical issues" which caused the CDU to be shut longer than expected, one of the sources familiar with the matter said.

"There was an issue with the steam chamber which is where the fire happened, but it affected the CDU as well," the source said. The refinery is still running at a reduced rate, the source added, though the current run rate was not immediately clear.

Operators of the refinery imported a few rare cargoes of diesel and jet fuel for late June to early July delivery, which caused Asian gasoil margins to spike to a more than three-month high last month.

The shutdown of the Malacca unit came at a time of strong demand from Indonesia, Asia's top gasoline importer, causing a severe supply crunch.

The deep supply dent had pushed the Asian gasoline margin to more than a four-year high of $16.74 a barrel.

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Publication:Oil & Gas News
Date:Jul 22, 2013
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