Angolan state-owned hydrocarbon company Sonangol has declared that construction work on its 200,000 b/d refinery of Lobito has been suspended in order to to reassess the strategic vision of development and implementation of this project, Africa Oil+Gas Report reported. The refinery is expected to produce for domestic and international markets.

US’s Energy Information Administration (EIA) informed that according to initial plans the refinery was designed to have starting processing capacity of 120,000 b/d. It was scheduled to come online latest 2018. However, there is no construction ongoing at the plant, located in Lobito in Benguela Province.

Nonetheless, the public company ensures that it will continue to fulfill its sustained plan up to now and reiterates its obligation to make every effort to maintain sustainable fuel supply to the Angolan market, informed Angola Press News Agency.

In March 2006, the President of Sonangol and the Vice President of Sinopec signed a partnership agreement to develop the refinery of which Sonangol would hold 70% of the stakes and Sinopec 30%. The then $3.5b project was planned to have the final capacity to process 200,000 b/d. In 2007, Sinopec withdrew from the project and eventually the company withdrew from its stakes in Angolan offshore oil blocks 15, 17 and 18.

In addition, the company further halted operation of the oil ocean terminal undergoing construction at Barra do Danda, near Luanda.