Despite set backs regarding the projects proposed end date. Pemex (Mexican state oil) still plans to move forward with the $10 Billion Tula refinery project. Although the company had neglected to include the project in their five-year plan, CEO of Pemex Emilio Lozoya recently addressed the media regarding the situation.
Mexican state oil monopoly Pemex has not axed plans for a new $10 billion Tula refinery, the company’s chief executive said on Wednesday, despite having pushed back the project’s completion to an unspecified date.
The future of the new Tula Bicentenario refinery in the eastern state of Hidalgo has been the subject of debate since it was omitted from Pemex’s updated five-year business plan last month.
That led local media to suggest the long-touted project had been terminated, a charge Pemex denied but failed to bury, saying in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this month that it was “evaluating the nature and timing of this project.”
Speaking in the lower house of Congress on Wednesday, Pemex CEO Emilio Lozoya said the project was still going ahead. But he was not clear about when construction would end on a project announced to great fanfare in 2008.
“The new Tula refinery project remains part of Pemex’s business plan,” Lozoya said, noting that the current plan ratified the objectives of the former 2013-2017 scheme. Pemex has often said the new refinery would be completed by 2017.
However, Lozoya did not give a specific completion date. Instead, he noted that Pemex’s priorities had shifted to focus on the more profitable upgrade of the existing Tula refinery, the country’s second biggest, near the planned location for the new refinery.
“In the new execution plan, we’re prioritizing the modernization or reconfiguration” of refineries, Lozoya said. “Pemex Refining’s strategy is very clear – create value.”
The upgrade to the Tula refinery, which will cost about 4 billion pesos ($309.19 million), was necessary, Lozoya said, because Pemex’s refining unit lost close to 1 percent of Mexico’s gross domestic product each year – or some 112 billion pesos. The installation of a new coker at the existing Tula refinery, on top of similar upgrades at two other refineries, would help stem losses more quickly, Lozoya said.