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Publishers Letter


With this issue, subscribers to the print edition of LubesnGreases received our completely updated 2008 Guide to Global Base Oil Re?ning, our annual listing of the worlds key mineral base oil plants. The 2008 Guide lists 165 re?neries and rere?neries, giving locations and capacities (paraf?nic vs. naphthenic, with paraf?nic capacity broken down by API group).

We calculate that total global mineral base oil capacity is now more than 949,000 barrels per day, up 1.3 percent from last year. Worldwide, API Group II and III capacities have each jumped 10 percent in the past year, to nearly 200,000 b/d and 45,300 b/d respectively. Naphthenic capacity rose 1.5 percent, to more than 82,000 b/d. Group I capacity has declined by 1.7 percent – most notably in Central and Eastern Europe and in North America – to less than 622,000 b/d. A year ago, Group I made up nearly 68 percent of the worlds total base oil capacity. Today its share has slipped to 65.5 percent.

Looking at geographic regions, capacity in Japan and Korea shot up 17 percent in the past year, with the opening of GS-Caltex. North Americas total capacity rose 1 percent, while Central and Eastern Europes slipped 4.8 percent.

One of the most intriguing features of the Guide is the roster of upcoming capacity additions. Nearly 81,000 b/d of Group II, III and gas-to-liquids base stocks are expected to come on stream over the next couple of years, plus more than 15,000 b/d of new naphthenic capacity.

This Guide is the ?rst of two annual global base stock guides; our companion 2008 Guide to Nonconventional Base Stocks (esters, silicones, PIBs, PAGs, PAO and more) will be published in September. We extend our thanks to the U.K.s Pathmaster Marketing Ltd. for its assistance in compiling the information, and to the many industry experts who shared data.

Please visit /base.htm for information about ordering copies of the Guides.

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