Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Tema Oil Refinery in deep financial crisis


Junior staff of the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) have appealed to President John Mahama to save the refinery from collapse.

They say the refinery is bleeding with a daily loss of GH₵350,000 due to the shutdown.

Samuel Boateng, Secretary of the Junior Staff Association of TOR, told Joy News TOR is a viable refinery that must not be allowed to collapse.

The refinery’s Crude Distillation Unit (CDU) plant was shut down in 2011 due to TOR’s inability to obtain letters of credit (LCs) from its bankers to purchase crude oil for production.

The refinery’s inability to raise the LCs was as a result of an operation framework between the commercial banks and the Bank of Ghana (BoG) that restricted the banks from raising LCs beyond a certain limit, depending on the business structure, explained acting Managing Director of TOR, Dr Alphonse Dorcoo in 2011.

Samuel Boateng said at a press conference on Tuesday July 22, 2014 that although TOR’s bankers were willing to raise the LCs, the limit put on LCs per BoG’s regulations made it difficult to raise money to buy the appropriate amounts of crude oil for the refinery.

“We need continuous supply of crude oil for us to refine”, he stressed.

According to him, the nation loses a lot of money because the plant is not running.

He said the workers would take drastic actions if government fails to intervene to restore operations at the refinery.

He said just like the Bulk Oil Distributors (BDCs) held the nation to ransom due to government’s indebtedness, by refusing to supply petroleum products to fuel stations, they may also have to take a similar step.

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