No intention of raising fuel prices : KNPC

KUWAIT: Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) has no intention of raising fuel prices, according to the company’s Spokesman Khalid Al-Asousi.

KNPC is conducting a study to determine the perfect fuel pricing in the country, Al-Asousi, also Deputy CEO for Support Services at the company told Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) on Sunday, adding that the current fuel prices cost Kuwait a big amount of money.

The outcome of selling refined oil products in expected to exceed USD 42 billion for the fiscal year 2014-2015, set to end on March 31st, said Al-Asousi.

He also noted that it is currently hard to determine the company’s profits for 2014 due to the drop in oil prices.

The Spokesman recalled the recent developments in the new Al-Zour refinery which consists of five divisions.

The first division is for the main industrial units; the second is the secondary industrial units; the third is services units; the fourth is for reservoirs and finally, the fifth is related to maritime facilities, he said.

The refinery will provide the Ministry of Electricity and Water with continuous amounts of low-sulphur fuel oil (225,000 barrel per day), Al-Asousi noted. Moreover, he said that the project aims at producing refined low-sulphur oil products for exportation.

Meanwhile, the Spokesman said the project pays attention towards reducing pollution in Kuwait by limiting the sulphur oxide coming from power stations, with expectations that polluting gases would decrease by 75 percent.

Al-Zour project will also refine heavy Kuwaiti crude oil for better economic outcome, he said. Moreover, after closing Al-Shuaiba refinery by 2017, Al-Zour would be a substitute in producing high quality oil products to improve the country’s economy and contribute to the development plan, he also added.

As for the KNPC’s environmental friendly fuel project, Al-Asousi said that over 12 percent of the project was executed, noting that the completion will occur by April 2018.

KNPC is planning on completing a number of projects including a fourth unit to produce liquefied petroleum gas set to operate next March.

Another project is establishing new reservoirs for liquefied gas in the north set to conclude by next October for the first part of the project, while the second part will finish by June 2016, he noted.

In addition, the company is establishing units to refine acid gas in April 2016 and April 2017, Al-Asousi noted, adding that among the projects will be a plan to build new facilities and develop the current sulphur handling facilities by June 2017.

Moreover, KNPC will develop and expand Al-Ahmadi terminal by January 2018, establish a fifth unit for liquefied petroleum gas in July 2019, a terminal for petroleum products in Al-Mitlaa in December 2020 and building facilities to import liquefied natural gas in February 2021, the Spokesman noted.

As for the privatization of the rest of the company’s stations, Al-Asousi said that KNPC is following a specific strategy on the issue, noting that they had transferred two groups of stations to be run by Al-Oula and Al-sour companies and will monitor and study the benefits of the process before progressing with its third group.

The Supreme Petroleum Council approved the KNPC’s request to build additional 100 fuel stations to face the increasing demand on fuel, he said.