- A privately owned oil refinery owned by Sentuo Group would soon start production in August 2023
- The Sentuo Oil Refinery is a $1.98 billion facility that would be sited at Tema in the Greater Accra Region
- When the refinery comes on stream in August, it will be able to produce five metric tonnes of petroleum products
- Experts have explained that a local refinery will beat down the cost of petroleum products for consumers
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Ghana's first privately-owned refinery, Sentuo Oil Refinery, will start operations in August 2023 and would rival struggling state-owned Tema Oil Refinery.
The $1.98 billion oil refinery is owned by the Sentuo Group and would be able to produce five metric tonnes of petroleum products, including liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), jet fuel, gasoline, diesel and fuel oil.
During a familiarisation tour of the mammoth facility recently with trade and industry ministry KT Hammond, Sentuo Group disclosed that by 2025, the refinery would refine 4.26 million tonnes of refined petroleum products such as gasoline, kerosene, and diesel of high quality above the euro iv standard.
The private refinery has the backing of the Chinese government and was conceived from the Chinese government’s Belt and Road Development Strategy for the oil and gas industry in China & Africa.
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When operations start in the latter part of August, it will be able to produce 350,000 tonnes of a series of pitch products, 200,000 tonnes of lubricating base oil and solvent naphtha and 400,000 tonnes of by-products such as polypropylene, ammonium sulphate, sulfuric acid and sulphur.
A local refinery would significantly bring down the cost of petroleum products, experts have said.
Sentuo Oil Refinery to bury TOR
The coming on stream of Sentuo is happening at a time there is disagreement about a deal to hand over TOR to a private company, Torentco.
It has been alleged by experts and people with knowledge about the deal that Torentco has a shady background and would further sink the state refinery that has been saddled with debts and mismanagement.
For instance, ranking member on Parliaments Mines and Energy Committee John Jinapor has asked the government to pull the brakes on the TOR-Torentco partnership deal.
The deal would see TOR leased to Torentco for six years but think tanks like IMANI Ghana argue that should the deal go on, TOR would be destroyed by the time the deal expires.
Energy expert at COPEC Ghana, Duncan Amoah warned not long ago that the earlier a better private partner was found for TOR the better because competition would soon become keen.
"Dangote Refinery is likely to come on stream by the end of [June]...Sentuo Refinery is also likely to come on stream by the end of [June] and they will be cited a few metres away from TOR," he warned in June when he spoke to YEN.com.gh.
Minority demands government suspends deal to lease TOR to private firm
YEN.com.gh reported earlier that the Minority in Parliament called for the deal to lease out the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) to be halted.
The Minority believes that the government must hold more stakeholder engagements on the matter.
Jinapor said the planned leasing will not help revive the refinery.
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