Petronas Breaks Ground in Melaka


Malaysias Petronas held a groundbreaking ceremony today commemorating the start of construction of a base oil plant at its refinery in Melaka, Malaysia. The plant, which is scheduled to open in 2008, is designed for capacity to make 6,500 barrels per day of Group III stocks.

The company has already begun to establish a marketing team and distribution network, and officials indicated the company will pitch its oils for use in low-viscosity passenger car motor oils.

The viscosity index is quite high, even for a Group III oil, Joe Rousmaniere, head of Petronas Base Oil Business, told Lube Report. We have succeeded in using it to make a 0W oil without polyalphaolefin, and we think [lubricant companies] will be very interested in that.

Petronas, formally known as Petroliam Nasional Bhd., is Malaysias national oil company. A fully integrated oil and natural gas company, Petronas already makes and markets lubricants, but the Melaka facility will be its first base oil plant.

It is one of several Group II and Group III plants that Pacific Rim refiners plan to build in the next few years. Petronas said the plant will use high-wax feedstock from its own refineries.

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