Lyondell-Citgo Refinery on the Block


Lyondell Chemical Co. and Citgo Petroleum Corp. agreed last week to sell the Lyondell-Citgo Refining LP partnership that operates a refinery in Houston with crude oil processing capacity of 268,000 barrels per day. The facility includes a base oil plant with capacity to make 1,000 b/d of API Group II and 3,600 b/d of naphthenic base stocks.

Asked if the base oil plant will be upgraded or closed or otherwise impacted by the proposed sale, Lyondell spokesman David Harpole said, There are no plans to make any adjustments in the operations of the refinery. All of the plants base oils and fuels are marketed by Citgo.

Lyondell-Citgo Refining was formed in 1993 as a joint venture between Lyondell Chemical, which owns 58.75 percent, and Citgo Petroleum, which owns 41.25 percent. Citgo is a subsidiary of Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of Venezuela.

The refinery was upgraded in 1997 to process large volumes of Venezuelas very heavy, high-sulfur crude oil.

Hours after the April 6 Lyondell-Citgo announcement, Citgo President and CEO Felix Rodriguez affirmed his companys commitment to its customers and the U.S. energy market, saying, We are not selling our wholly owned refineries or other strategic [U.S.] assets. Citgos Lake Charles, La., base oil refinery has a capacity of 9,500 b/d of Group I stocks.

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