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Refineries & Retail News

Zuma promises ‘seamless’ ANC transition at energy indaba that sidesteps IRP debate

By: Terence Creamer     7th December 2017 President Jacob Zuma used his address at the Energy Indaba, taking place in Johannesburg this week, to assure business and investors that the upcoming African National Congress (ANC) elective conference would be “orderly and peaceful”, while promising a “seamless” handover to the new ANC... 

Total, Sonangol sign new project pipeline agreements

By: Schalk Burger     5th December 2017 Oil and gas multinational Total and Angola State-owned oil company Sonangol have signed various agreements to jointly develop new upstream and downstream projects. Total chairperson and CEO Patrick Pouyanné on Monday held an audience with Angolan President João Lourenço and Sonangol chairperson... 

Vivo to gain 300 stations in 9 African countries in Engen share transaction

By: Schalk Burger     5th December 2017 Petroleum and energy company Vivo Energy, which represents oil multinational Shell’s brand of fuels and lubricants in Africa, will gain 300 service stations across nine African countries after it agreed to buys shares in oil multinational Engen International Holdings from Engen Holdings in... 

Sasol the most successful service station brand in SA, says Lightstone Explore

By: Irma Venter     27th November 2017 Sasol service stations are attracting the most feet per service station in South Africa, with Shell service stations in second position. Engen, with its much larger service station footprint, attracts more visitors, in total, than any other brand. 

 Sasol the most successful service station brand in SA, says Lightstone Explore

Company expands diesel supply to include buses

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th November 2017 Wholesale prices fuel supplier Next Grace Investments is providing a valuable diesel supply solutions for clients in the bus and truck industry. During the Gauteng Bus Indaba and Strategic Planning Workshop, held in September at the Nasrec Expo Centre, in Johannesburg, Next Grace Investments... 

Company expands diesel supply to include buses
PARKING THE BUS Next Grace Investments’ depots enables buses and trucks to refuel and park at the facilities, while drivers have access to food and shower facilities

Financial results exhibit value-based growth

     27th October 2017 In the 2017 financial year, energy and chemicals company Sasol’s results portrayed value-based growth on a robust foundation owing to a strong business performance across most of the value chain. 

Financial results exhibit value-based growth
STRONG PERFORMANCE The company’s strong cost performance was achieved by the sustainable delivery of its Business Performance Enhancement Programme and Response Plan

Company mitigates refinery industry challenges

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th October 2017 Amid the weak demand and low prices that have hampered strategic decision-making and stalled planning for the oil and gas industry globally, specialised engineering company RTS Africa Engineering says improved technologies facilitating the understanding of process variables allow for cautious... 

Company mitigates refinery industry challenges
MEASURING HYDROGEN The Hy-Optima 2700 series hydrogen analysers uses a solid-state, non-consumable sensor that is configured to operate in process gas streams

Pressure equipment for petrochem industry

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th October 2017 Gas equipment supplier Energas Technologies says it will be beneficial being a local distributor and service provider for Italy-based specialised equipment manufacturer VRV, to local refineries and petrochemicals companies in particular.  

Pressure equipment for petrochem industry
UNDER PRESSURE Energas' core focus is supplying systems and equipment for natural gas and petrochemical industries

Continued volatility impacts on energy and chemicals company

     27th October 2017 Continued volatility in the macroeconomic environment, particularly the stronger rand and low oil price, has adversely impacted energy and chemicals company Sasol’s financial performance, says Sasol CFO Paul Victor. 

Continued volatility  impacts on energy and  chemicals company
Photo by Bloomberg
RECORD PRODUCTION Sasol showed great resilience and character through delivering record production volumes at Secunda Synfuels

First synthetic Blue Crude plant to start operation in 2020

     27th October 2017 The mass production of the environment-friendly synthetic crude oil substitute Blue Crude will become a reality from 2020, says research and development company Sunfire.  

First synthetic Blue Crude plant to start operation in 2020
GOING BLUE Refineries can use Blue Crude as a raw material for waxes, and petrol, diesel, kerosene and even rocket fuel

Initiatives aim to reduce carbon footprint and production costs

By: Simone Liedtke     27th October 2017 Current initiatives in the global synthetic fuels (synfuels) industry are focussing on using coal feedstock more efficiently to reduce operational and capital costs of production, states chemicals process engineering company Holland and Hausberger CEO Dr Brendon Hausberger. 

Initiatives aim to  reduce carbon footprint and production costs
GENERAL PUBLIC PERCEPTION The general public perception is that coal is a dirty and undesirable environment-costly option

Positive prospects for synfuels sector with focus on efficient maintenance

By: Simone Liedtke     27th October 2017 Welding and construction equipment-related supplier Renttech South Africa (SA) sees prospects for the synfuels industry improving, as the recent depressed period - owing to the decline globally in hydrocarbon fuel prices - has seen the petrochemicals industry focusing on efficient maintenance,... 

Positive prospects for synfuels sector with focus on efficient maintenance
TO GROW AND PROSPER The country needs to have an efficient, cost-competitive local petrochemicals industry

US to strengthen energy partnerships in Africa, says US Energy Secretary

By: Kim Cloete     25th October 2017 US Energy Secretary Rick Perry says his government is committed to strengthening its energy partnerships with African countries, but has called for a clear and transparent regulatory environment. “There is no more important message that governing bodies can send to both the US government and the... 

US to strengthen energy partnerships in Africa, says US Energy Secretary
US Energy Secretary Rick Perry

Empowered lubricants firm seeks to raise market share with blending plant investment

By: Irma Venter     20th October 2017 Blue Chip Lubricants (BCL) has completed the construction of a new blending plant in Johannesburg, which it hopes will help the company to secure a fifth of the lubricants market in South Africa. The company will be aided in this ambition by the sale of 51% of the business to black-owned firm... 

DA to report minister Brown to public protector and ethics committee over Eskom contract

By: African News Agency      16th October 2017 The Democratic Alliance (DA) will ask Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to investigate Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown for any role she played in awarding lucrative oil contracts worth R1.2-million from Eskom “to her lover and close business associate” despite their lack of expertise in... 

Energy Minister Kubayi denies her secondment of Zulu to fuel fund was illegal

By: African News Agency      10th October 2017 Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi on Tuesday told MPs she had no doubt about the legality of her secondment of former director general Thabane Zulu to the Strategic Fuel Fund as its acting chief executive officer, but stopped short of assuring them it had been approved by the board of the entity.... 

Work apparel company sees further growth in sales

By: Simone Liedtke     6th October 2017 Since the beginning of the year, industrial supplier and solutions provider Total Blasting – a subsidiary of Total Product Solutions Group – has sold more than 50 sets of water blast and water jet personal protective equipment (PPE) and the company foresees this number steadily growing at a... 

Work apparel company sees further growth in sales
SPECIAL DESIGN The personal protective equipment was designed to not restrict operator movement and flexibility

Sale of South Africa’s strategic fuel stocks heads to court

By: African News Agency      5th October 2017 The question of whether South Africa can access strategic fuel stocks sold way below market price in a controversial deal made in late 2015 will be answered by a court of law, Strategic Fuel Fund (SFF) acting chief executive Thabani Zulu said on Wednesday. Speaking to journalists on the sidelines... 

Transnet upgrades fuel pipeline from Durban to Johannesburg

By: African News Agency      5th October 2017 Transnet’s has commissioned its upgraded 55 km multiproduct pipeline, which will enable it to move four petroleum products from Durban to Johannesburg. When the 24-inch trunk-line was first commissioned in 2012 it transported only diesel. 

Blue Chip Lubricants opens plant, seals empowerment deal as it aims for fifth of the market 

By: Irma Venter     28th September 2017 Blue Chip Lubricants (BCL) has completed the construction of a new blending plant in Johannesburg, which it hopes will help the company to secure a fifth of the lubricants market in South Africa. The company will be aided in this ambition by the sale of 51% of the business to black-owned firm... 

Blue Chip Lubricants opens plant, seals empowerment deal as it aims for fifth of the market
Lutramart director Sandile Koza chats to Engineering News Online about the benefits of the new Johannesburg-based blending plant

Fuel retailers need to consider rapidly changing industry dynamics

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th September 2017 A new approach to sustaining the fuel retail industry is required as technology and new trends are set to disrupt the way retailers operate, Absa franchise Africa head Dumisani Bengu said on Wednesday. Speaking at the Fuel Retailers Association Conference, held on the sidelines of the... 

ARA recommits to 2020 clean fuels policy

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st September 2017 The African Refiners and Distributors Association (ARA) on Thursday confirmed its commitment to the 2020 clean fuel policy, which outlined a plan for vehicle emission controls and standards to achieve all the benefits of clean air quality. Following a clean fuels workshop in Togo last week, the... 

Cost-effective workforce housing supports oil refinery shutdown

     8th September 2017 Prefabricated buildings manufacturer Kwikspace Modular Buildings helped to facilitate a smooth turnaround process during a three-month shutdown at one of Southern Africa’s largest crude oil refineries this year, through the supply of modular housing for critical staff. 

Cost-effective workforce housing supports oil refinery shutdown
SHORT-TERM SOLUTION Nearly 100 workers from various international locations needed to be trained and housed for the duration of the three-month project

High-quality weld preparation for oil and gas industry

     8th September 2017 Orbital cutting and bevelling machines for high-purity piping from international weld preparation products supplier EH Wachs are now available in South Africa from industrial equipment supplier Dowson & Dobson Industrial, a division of Actum Industrial, to serve the unique needs of the oil and... 

High-quality weld  preparation for oil  and gas industry
SAFETY AND PRECISION The cold cutting process eliminates the risks associated with torch cutting and produces a stronger weld joint

Mobile units ensure flexible fire protection at oil refineries

By: Robyn Wilkinson     8th September 2017 Fire protection equipment supplier DoseTech commissioned a second firefighting trailer-mounted (FTM) unit for a South Africa-based crude oil storage depot last month, providing a highly portable and flexible solution to complement the depot’s existing large-scale foam and water cannon system. 

Mobile units ensure flexible fire protection at oil refineries
SAFETY MADE EASY DoseTech has seen eager demand from South African oil refineries for its mobile fire-protection equipment

Retractable spray injectors important cost savers

By: Robyn Wilkinson     8th September 2017 Retractable spray injectors not only increase the ease and safety of performing inspection and maintenance activities at oil refineries but can also potentially reduce operational downtime and contribute to significant cost savings, says spraying systems provider Monitor Engineering MD Grant... 

Retractable spray injectors important  cost savers
KEY COOLING Spray injectors inject liquids or gases into process streams, providing critical cooling, mixing, quenching, washing, humidifying, gas cooling or chemical reactions

Thermal spray coatings provide protection for refineries

     8th September 2017 Thermal spray coatings can produce significant cost savings for refineries by reducing the amount of piping maintenance required to guard against the consequences of corrosion under insulation (CUI), says wear solutions provider Weartech director Adam Wintle.  

Thermal spray  coatings provide  protection for refineries
PROTECTIVE LAYER Coatings produced with thermal spraying are formed when millions of particles are deposited on top of each other and are bonded to the substrate

Well-managed upgrades essential at African refineries

By: Robyn Wilkinson     8th September 2017 With demand for cleaner fuel products driving refinery upgrades in Africa, turnaround planning must be carefully managed to eliminate the risks of costly overruns and production losses, which can threaten the economic viability of the projects, says project management consultancy Turner &... 

Well-managed upgrades essential  at African refineries
Photo by Bloomberg
KEEPING UP Refineries are under pressure to become more environment-friendly in respect of their direct impact on the environment and the impact of the fuels they produce

Importing refined fuels quicker and more financially viable for Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     8th September 2017 Rather than focusing time and finances on establishing new oil refineries, African countries should enhance their focus on a niche market strength that will enable them to become competitive in a global market, accepting that the import and storage of refined fuels is a quicker and more... 

Importing refined fuels quicker and more financially viable for Africa
RODRICK NAIDOO Countries that have their own crude resources and established mega-refineries could never be outpriced by a South African refinery

Strategic planning ensures successful turnaround on refinery upgrades

     8th September 2017 Creative thinking and sound preparation enabled engineering firm MegChem to assist oil company Chevron with large-scale upgrades at its Cape Town refinery in a turnaround period of ten weeks, says MegChem director Louis Odendaal 

Strategic planning ensures successful turnaround on  refinery upgrades
TEAM EFFORT The combined Chevron and MegChem teams worked together closely to complete the upgrades

LPG production steady and in demand, says supplier

By: Marleny Arnoldi     1st September 2017 In the past unscheduled shutdowns affected South Africa’s liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), but this year, local production is steady, says LPG supplier Easigas. Easigas commercial technical manager Dave de Wit points out that supply should improve, considering the development of terminal facilities... 

LPG production steady and in demand, says supplier
DAVE DE WIT Easigas has the capability and experience to evaluate and assist in optimising a customer’s gas equipment

BP Southern Africa appoints first black female CEO

By: African News Agency      28th August 2017 BP Southern Africa (BPSA) on Monday appointed chartered accountant, Priscillah Mabelane, as its new chief executive. Mabelane is the first woman in the history of the country’s oil industry to head a multinational company, marking a significant milestone in the organisation and industry’s... 

Still much uncertainty as LPG stakeholders grapple with market inquiry findings

By: Mia Breytenbach     18th August 2017 In the findings and recommendations of the first-ever market inquiry into the local liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) industry, the Competition Commission urges public and private organisations to improve performance in the sector, yet much uncertainty remains in the wake of the report’s publication.... 

Still much uncertainty as LPG stakeholders grapple with market inquiry findings

Local manufacturer looks to bridge skills gap

By: Nadine James     11th August 2017 Sealing products manufacturer Klinger Mzansi has opened its training academy, which offers a learnership programme, joint integrity training as well as an introductory course on all of the company’s products. Klinger sales and marketing director Phillip Herbst notes that the academy opened on... 

Local manufacturer looks to bridge skills gap
KLINGER TRAINING ACADEMY The trainees have access to a fully equipped workshop, and gain both practical and theoretical knowledge

Legal and policy certainty required if gas economy is to be realised

By: Mia Breytenbach     4th August 2017 Key factors that will influence the establishment of a gas economy in South Africa include the passing of the amended Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) and greater clarity regarding the expected and stated imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), says South African Oil and... 

Legal and policy certainty required if gas economy is to be realised
Photo by Reuters
INDUSTRIAL ROLEMODEL Liquefied petroleum gas industry could play a strategic role in the establishment of a gas economy as key lessons can be learnt from this industry 

Particulate matter a national concern

By: Simone Liedtke     7th July 2017 Owing to government’s 2020 target that air quality in all low-income settlements should be in full compliance with ambient air quality standards, mineral processing company MIP Process Technologies (MIP) MD Philip Hoff says particulate matter is, therefore, a national concern. 

Particulate matter a national concern
PHILIP HOFF MIP invests in young engineers and has, in the past, offered bursaries to chemical engineering students

Thermometer designed and tested for industry use

     7th July 2017 Handheld-products supplier Fluke - represented locally by distribution service provider Comtest - has launched the Fluke 64 MAX IR thermometer with internal memory, unattended monitoring, improved accuracy, increased battery life, as well as the precision needed to do the job accurately. 

Thermometer  designed and tested  for industry use
THERMOMETER APPLICATIONS Applications include the industrial maintenance, the electrical as well as the heating, ventilation and air conditioning industries
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