A residual fluid catalytic cracker (RFCC) at Oman's Sohar refinery has been partially shut down on Thursday due to a leakage, a company source said on Friday.
"There was a catalyst leak due to high temperatures. We are monitoring the situation now. It's a partial shutdown," the company source said.
A Singapore-based trader said the 75,200 barrels per day (bpd) RFCC, or gasoline-making unit, would be shut for about a month, and he expected the refiner to issue tenders to buy gasoline within the next few days.
The Sohar refinery has a crude processing capacity of about 116,400 bpd.
"Anyone could win the tenders, but if they get the gasoline from Singapore, it may create a slight tightness in the market," said the trader.
The gasoline market in Asia have been tightened in recent weeks, as China, usually an exporter of the motor fuel, was importing a record volume of gasoline for April.
Singapore gasoline's reforming margin stood at firm levels of more than $12 (Dh44) a barrel on Thursday, after touching highs of nearly $15 (Dh55) late last week. (Reuters)
Oman refinery unit partially shut due to leakage