Congressman wants House to look into refinery closures

petron bataan refinery

Following the closure of Pilipinas Shell’s oil refinery last August and the impending shutdown of Petron’s facility in January, Surigao Del Sur Rep. Johnny Pimentel wants the House Committee on Energy to look into these developments and see how these could affect the country’s energy security.

Pimentel is concerned that there may be a disruption in the country’s oil supply without its own refineries once the economy begins to fully recover. He hopes that the Department of Energy and the country’s oil industry would shed light into the matter.

Shell decided to close its 110,000-barrel per day refinery in Batangas, citing that it would be unprofitable to operate it moving forward.

Petron, meanwhile, said that it would halt the Bataan refinery’s production activities due to its taxation issues. The country’s largest oil company has assured the public, though, that its fuel supply won’t be disrupted by the refinery’s “economic shutdown.”

Refineries produce finished petroleum products such as diesel, gasoline, kerosene, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), and aviation fuel among others.

Pimentel shares the observation of Finance Sec. Carlos Dominguez that many other oil companies abroad have also closed their refineries.

The solon asks, though, if a sudden reduction in global refining capacity can affect the Philippines’ supply of finished fuels in the future. He also wants to know if the country has storage capacity for ready-to-use fuels in case of disasters or crises.


Photo from Petron website.