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April 11, 2018

Volume 3 Issue 4

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Petrobras Expansion Moving Forward

Petrobras’ blending plant in Duque de Caxias, Brazil, will be one of the world’s five largest when an expansion there is completed in 2020, the company said last week. Brazil’s largest lube supplier intends to use that capacity to boost sales both at home and abroad.

The company issued its statement Friday, two days after filing an advisory on Brazil’s B3 stock exchange advising that it has resumed work on the expansion. The filing resembled a mid-2017 announcement the company was restarting the project, which had been stalled since 2012.

“As the leader and most recognized brand in the Brazilian lubricant market, with a 22.5 percent market share in 2017, the Lubrax line has the potential to gain even more space, including abroad,” the company said in Friday’s statement.

The plant in Duque de Caxias, a city in the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area, is already Petrobras’ largest and the biggest blending facility in South America with capacity of 290,000 metric tons per year. The expansion is designed to increase that number by 55 percent to 450,000 t/y.

 Petrobras officials said the plant currently operates at maximum capacity, a fact that restricts the company’s ability to expand sales. In addition to the domestic market, it sells lubes in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay.

The plant produces 900 products and in recent years has introduced synthetic oils for diesel engines, premium agricultural lubricants and engine oils for hybrid engines.

Petrobras drum filling line

Photo Courtesy of Petrobras

Workers operate a drum filling line at a Petrobras lubricants manufacturing plant in Brazil.