Total is looking to suspend operations at its 220,000 barrels a day (b/d) Donges refinery in western France because the facility has been losing money as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement sent to Bunkerspot today (24 November), Total said: ‘The COVID crisis has a negative impact on oil products demand, which causes a very sharp deterioration of refinery margins. In this context, the Donges refinery is operating at a loss.’
Total said that it has decided to halt operations ‘for the months to come, awaiting better economic conditions’. However, the company added that the major modernisation project is still ongoing.
In an article published this morning, news agency Reuters quoted union sources’ as saying that the stoppage would take effect on Monday and could last for four months.
As previously reported by Bunkerspot, Total is currently planning to convert another of its French refinery – the 93,000 b/d Grandpuits plant – into a zero-crude platform’ that will be producing renewable diesel and bioplastics.