Naftna Industrija Srbije a.d., Serbia’s Russian-owned oil company, shut its main refinery near Belgrade for a $26 million upgrade that will last 45 days.
NIS, majority owned by OAO Gazprom Neft, will spend 14 million euros ($20 million) on new equipment for fluid catalytic cracking and 480 million dinars ($6.3 million) on other production units at the Pancevo refinery, the company said in an e-mailed statement today. The upgrade will help it meet an output target for 2010 of 230,000 tons of fuel.
Gazprom Neft, which bought a 51 percent stake in NIS for 400 million euros ($556 million) in 2009, is obliged to invest 500 million euros in NIS to upgrade its processing facilities.
The overhaul of the Pancevo refinery, damaged during NATO bombing of Serbia in 1999, is part of Gazprom Neft’s drive to prepare for the opening up of the market next year, when NIS loses its monopoly on processing and refining crude oil in Serbia.
NIS said it has already built up stocks for the next 45 days and its other refinery in Novi Sad will step in if needed. The two refineries together process 7.3 million tons of oil a year.
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