Portugal’s third oil refinery kicks off in 2009

12 December 2005

Lisbon, Portugal, 12 Dec – Portugal will have a third oil refinery in 2009, and it will be the largest of its kind in the Iberian peninsula under the terms of a memorandum of understanding signed Friday by the Portuguese government and businessman Patrick Monteiro de Barros.

As well as Monteiro de Barros, a businessman linked to the Portuguese and US oil sectors, the new refinery in Sines, some 150 kilometers south of Lisbon, will also be partially owned by and US investors as part of British company Argus.

The new refinery, projected to cost US$4 billion, will have a production capacity of 300,000 barrels per day, one and a half times more than Portugal’s largest refinery, owned by Galp Energia and also located at Sines.

The main aim of the new facility is to export fuel to the North American market and building work is due to begin in 2006.

Monteiro de Barros decided to move ahead with the project after turning down a project to build a nuclear power plant in Portugal estimated at 3.5 billion euros.

The businessman bought out several US refineries at a stage of near bankruptcy, such as Tosco, which is now one of the largest in the country.

Monteiro de Barros is currently one of the largest individual shareholders of Portugal Telecom, with close to a 2 percent share. (macauhub)