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February 4, 2015

Volume 17 Issue 52

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Lukoil Upgrades Austrian Lube Plant

Russian oil major Lukoil started an expansion of its lube manufacturing plant in Vienna to bolster its logistics and supply base in Central and Western Europe.

Construction on the site at the Danube river oil port of Lobau began Jan. 29 in a groundbreaking ceremony attended by Lukoil President Vagit Alekperov. The upgrade includes new mooring and storage facilities that will improve production logistics while easing supply of European lubricant customers, the company said.

“We are not only upgrading our Austrian lube manufacturing plant, but in fact we are constructing an integrated complex with a number of technological advantages, including improved capabilities related to transportation and storage of base oils and finished lubricants,” Alekperov said in a new release.

The 35,000 tons per year blending plant is operated by Lukoil lube arm LLK International. The expansion includes a floating oil transshipment station, construction of several new storage tanks and reconstruction of existing ones into production tanks. “After the upgrade is done, previous storage capacities will be more than doubled, and river transportation can be employed by ship loading and unloading, which is not the case now, [because] all of the plant’s logistics are done via road and railway,” the company said.

The lubricants plant in Lobau was built by Austrian energy giant OMV in 1995. In the summer of 2013 Lukoil acquired the plant along with key OMV lube brand Bixxol. The company also took control of the Austrian company’s distribution operations in Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Serbia, Romania and Bulgaria.

Lukoil is among the world’s top 10 lubricant producers. In Russia it operates four base oil and blending plants. Its annual base oil and lubricant output is around 1.2 million tons. In 2014 it held a 40 percent share of Russian base oil and lubricants production, the company said.

The company’s products are marketed in over 100 countries around the globe. In addition to the plant in Vienna, Lukoil operates three more blending plants in Europe – one in Turkey, one in Romania and another in Finland.