Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp. on Thursday assured its customers and the public that its Tabangao refinery in Batangas continues to operate and its supply of quality fuels remain undisrupted despite the ongoing labor dispute.
Pilipinas Shell said it received a notice of strike on June 18 from a labor union of its Tabangao refinery, which has a capacity of 110,000 barrels a day. The union has around 100 member-employees
The oil company and the Tabangao Shell Refinery Employees Association–PTGWO committed to advance negotiations in their collective bargaining agreement before the National Conciliation and Mediation Board.
“In the meantime, no actual strike may be staged,” Pilipinas Shell said.
The notice of strike was served as no agreement on the economic provisions was reached by the parties.
Pilipinas Shell, the country’s second largest oil company, said plans were under way for a hydrogen optimization project in its Tabangao refinery.
The company set a capital expenditure budget of P6 billion for the hydrogen project and retail network expansion this year.
“This year, 2019, we are increasing our planned capital expenditure to P6 billion. This is to support the further expansion of our retail business and improve the flexibility of our Tabangao refinery,” Jose Jerome Pascual III, Pilipinas Shell chief financial officer, said earlier.
Pascual said the refinery would be more aggressive in looking for improvements and opportunities to eliminate waste this year.
“Our refinery will start investing on its hydrogen optimization project that will allow it to improve flexibility of its crude intake and product slate,” he said.
Pilipinas Shell president Cesar Romero said “the availability of more hydrogen will allow us to process more advantage crude, more exotic crude.”
“If we are able to process more grades of crude, it will also lead to production of more middle distillates... t’s not primarily intended to be a main capacity increasing option but it will yield to some improvements in capacity as well,” he said.