INDENI closure worries UNIP Acting President Mike Kaira
By Derrick Sinjela
The United National Independence Party (UNIP) is unhappy following the closure and eventual transformation of INDENI into an oil marketing operator.
In a Thursday, 1st September, 2022 Press Statement released from Ndola, Copperbelt Province UNIP Acting President Mike Kaira protested the turning of INDENI into an oil marketing operation.
A greatly disturbed Kaira lamented that UNIP is saddened over the development on account of reason which prompted it’s formation still being as valid as at INDENI’s establishment.
Kaira recollected that as a land locked country, surrounded with eight neighbours, Zambia was made to uplift her fuel from Mozambique, Tanzania and in some instances by air from petroleum producers outside the African Continent.
A straight-talking Kaira says it is against this first reason alluded to above that former First Tanzanian President, the late Julius Kambarange Mwalimu Nyerere and Zambia’s former First President Dr Kenneth David Buchizya Kaunda decided to establish INDENI in Ndola.
Secondly, Kaira reinforced a popular notion agreed to by historians that the decision to sent up INDENI Refinery was informed by UNIP’s incomparable policy on employment creation.
Aside from the refinery being build, the UNIP Administration built an elaborate domestic and commercial infrastructure, thus creating pensionable
jobs, a prerequisite to sustainable livelihood.
Kaira is disheartened that the closure of INDENI Refinery will result in immeasurable direct job loses at the petroleum plant and sister units, the electricity generation facility, to name but one.
A worried Kaira implored President Hakainde Hichilema and the United Party for National Development (UPND) Administration to reverse the decision, urging Zambia’s 7th Head of State to fix the problem.
The UNIP Acting President described the action taken to transform INDENI Refinery into an oil marketing operator as highly questionable and uncalled for.
Kaira expressed disappointment urging President Hichilema to intervene by reversing the decision to transform INDENI Refinery into an oil marketing operator.
Both President Hichilema and Energy Minister Peter Kapala are on record confirming that Zambia will in 2022 stop importing crude feedstock for refining at the venerable Indeni refinery and instead rely on imported finished petroleum products, as part of reforms stepping back from involvement in selling to consumers.
The Indeni Refinery is configured as a Hydro-skimming refinery designed in 1973, the refinery is not able to refine pure crude at commercial levels and processes spiked crude.
The refinery is able to produce the following products: “unleaded petrol, automotive gas oil, industrial kerosene, domestic kerosene, Jet fuel, Liquefied Petroleum Gas, reformate, fuel oil and asphalt.
When the refinery was established in 1973, it was owned and managed by Indeni Petroleum Refinery Company Limited, a 50/50 joint venture between the government of Zambia and Eni, the Italian energy conglomerate, through their subsidiary Agip Zambia.
Under the terms of the joint venture, Eni was responsible for the management of the refinery.
In 2001, Eni sold their shareholding to Total S.A., through their subsidiary TotalFinaElf.
In 2009, Total S.A. sold their shareholding to the Zambian government for consideration of US$5.5 million.
Since then, there have been attempts to bring on-board a strategic partner with funding and expertise to upgrade, modernize and expand the refinery.
TAZAMA stands for Tanzania Zambia Mafuta. “Mafuta” means “Oil” in Kiswahili.
Shareholding in the stock of Tazama Pipelines Limited pegs the Government of Zambia with
66.70 shared and Government of Tanzania at
NOTE: Indeni Operations
product lines manufactured in the refinery are as the result of refining of crude.
Crude is primary a liquid of widely vary chemical and physical properties whose principal element is carbon and hydrogen arranged as hydrocarbons also Sulphur, hydrogen, oxygen and water.
The main products from crude are white products containing no Sulphur, the lightest among them being LPG and and black products namely: “LPG, Butane, Light gasoline, Heavy gasoline, Reformate, Special cut kerosene, Jet A1, Industrial kerosene, Illuminating kerosene, Low Sulphur gasoil, Automotive gasoil, fuel oil, MC30 and Bitumen.
INDENI Plants sector comprises of five main processing units: “Topping, Hydrotreater, Reforming, Vacuum and Asphalt.
The TOPPING UNIT
is the Primary Unit and is the process flow from Tank to main Column whilst Secondary one is from vessel to storage.
Crude from Tanzania Zambia Mafuta (Tazama) is stored in crude storage tanks and pumped in series of heat exchangers to desalter (removes salt from crude), up through to vessel (where impurities like iron chloride, sodium are removed) and passes through Heat exchangers to Furnace for preheating.
HYDROTREATER UNIT – is the process of removing sulphate, Nitrogen and oxygen compound from the Overheads by reacting with hydrogen.
– is a Secondary unit from vessel which collects Lighter products from Hydrotreater, stabilizes and slipes products before sending them to storage.
VACUUM AND ASPHALT UNIT
– is a unit producing Bitumen.
The Utilities is the main source of process heat and steam that manages and maintain the refinery Boilers, Water and Wastewater.
– Water and Wastewater is a water treatment, and wastewater treatment area which provides water to the process.
MOVEMENTS OF PRODUCTS (MOP)
work in conjunction with deliveries and pump house.
The volume of the product in the tank after any transfer is ascertained by getting the level from tank through Automated Tank Gauging (ATG) system.