June 10, 2019 [Strait Times] – Capacity raised by nearly 1.3m barrels, giving it more flexibility in optimising oil trading activities Energy giant Shell has increased the storage capacity at its Singapore Bukom refinery by nearly 1.3 million barrels by building two large crude oil tanks.
It built the tanks using automated technology that cut welding time by 60 per cent and reduced costs.The expansion gives Shell greater flexibility in optimising its oil trading activities, it noted on Thursday.
It should also improve competitiveness due to expected increases in demand for oil products in the region and globally over the next two decades. Singapore is Shell’s largest petrochemical production and export centre in the Asia-Pacific region.
The firm is also investing in storage and logistics for its other key sites in Rotterdam and on the United States Gulf Coast.
Mr Robin Mooldijk, executive vice-president for manufacturing at Shell, said the new facilities here will allow it to buy more oil when market conditions are attractive. “This project positions Shell to capture stronger margins and better manage market volatility over the coming years.”
Shell has expanded capacity here before. It penned an agreement with privately owned Oiltanking Singapore Chemical Storage (OTCS) last September to lease two more propylene storage tanks on Jurong Island.
OTCS is an independent storage provider that handles petrochemical products and runs a terminal on Jurong Island. Pulau Bukom is also home to Shell’s ethylene cracker complex, which expanded production capacity from 800,000 tonnes a year to one million tonnes after an upgrading in 2015.