PwC to Close Coryton Oil Refinery

Thursday, May 31, 2012 Print Email

Coryton oil refinery is set to close after PwC failed to find a buyer since being appointed as administrator in January, leaving over 500 jobs at risk.

Despite providing around 20% of the fuel used in the South-East, including London, would-be investors were put off by the £625m bill needed to redevelop the site.

Petroplus Refining and Marketing Ltd (PRML) - which owns the Essex plant, as well as several other refineries across Europe – delisted from trading on the SIX Swiss Exchange 24 May 2012.

Steven Pearson, joint administrator and partner with PwC, said: ‘We have had contact with over 100 possible investors and purchasers. We have been unable to reach a deal to date.

‘The current financing market is exceptionally difficult – capital is short and expensive. Prospective investors in the refinery faced a significant capital expenditure need, as well as a fragile market for refined oil products. These factors have conspired against us in trying to structure a deal.’

According to FACTS Global Energy – strategic advisers to investors in the oil and gas market – total UK capacity without Coryton is around 1.78m barrels per day, but the seven other UK refineries are only producing at 80% capacity and could step up production to avoid fuel shortages.

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