KazMunaiGas International (KMGI) Plans In Romania May Be Change After Blast On Romania’s Rompetrol Rafinare Petromidia

KazMunaiGas International (KMGI) Plans In Romania May Be Change After Blast On Romania's Rompetrol Rafinare PetromidiaRomania’s Rompetrol Rafinare Petromidia refinery is operating at reduced capacity after an explosion took place Monday night in the area of the vacuum distillation plant, killing one worker and injuring another three, its parent company said on Tuesday.

“Based on the measurements on air emissions, following the fire, there were no recorded values that endanger the lives of employees and communities from the vicinity of the refinery or tourists, fact certified by CBRN analysis (Chemical, Biological, Radiologic and Nuclear parameters),” Kazakhstan’s KazMunaiGas International (KMGI) said in a press release on Tuesday.

In May Romanian prosecutors seized the Petromidia refinery and other assets worth a total 3 billion lei ($738 million/671 million euro) belonging to Rompetrol and parent company KazMunayGas as part of an investigation into suspected violations related to the privatisation of the Rompetrol group.

KMGI said at the time it is ready to seek international arbitration against Romania over the seizure.

KMGI has also repeatedly said that its plans in Romania may be impacted significantly by this ongoing investigation.

Following the assets’ seizure, Rompetrol Rafinare’s shares were suspended from trading on the Bucharest Stock Exchange.

In April, China Energy Company Limited, CEFC, signed a memorandum of understanding to buy a 51% stake in state-owned KMGI for $680 million.

In Romania, KMGI operates Petromidia Navodari refinery, with a processing capacity of 5 million tons per year, Vega Ploiesti Refinery – the oldest unit of its kind in operation since 1905, but also a fuels distribution network of over 700 distribution points, 230 LPG stations, 9,000 cylinders distribution points, 3 LPG filling stations and 6 warehouses.

It also owns filling stations in Moldova, Bulgaria and France via Dyneff company. In July, KMGI sold a 51% in Dyneff to CEFC.

KMGI bought a 75% stake in Rompetrol from Dinu Patriciu for around 2.5 billion euro in 2007.

Rompetrol was privatised in 1993 by Management and Employee Buy Out (MEBO) and in 1998 it was bought by a local investor group, lead by Patriciu.

(1 euro=4.4610 lei)

Author Nicoleta Banila