Naftal Opens Drum Factory in Algeria

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Algerian motor fuels retailer Naftal inaugurated a factory this month in the northwest of the country that manufactures metal drums used to package lubricants.

Located in the city of Mascara, the factory has capacity to produce 400,000 barrels per year and was built at a price of 1.2 billion dinar (U.S. $8.2 million), according to the company, which is a subsidiary of national energy firm Sonatrach.

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According to a bulletin posted July 7 on Naftal’s website, this is the company’s first drum manufacturing plant. Officials said the factory was built mainly to satisfy Naftal’s own needs, but they added that it can produce enough barrels to cover the country’s entire demand to package for such containers.

In a ceremony held on Algeria’s independence day, Naftal CEO Mourad Menaouar said the company previously procured barrels from private suppliers but that they had not fully met the company’s needs.

Algeria’s lubricant demand is 146,000 metric tons per year, according to estimates by IHS Markit. The sector has received significant investments the past couple years. Earlier this year TotalEnergies opened a 40,000 t/y plant in the coastal city of Bethioua. A joint venture between Naftal and Greek refiner Motor Oil Hellas is building a plant designed to make 55,000 t/y of fluid lubricants and 5,000 t/y of greases.

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