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Venezuelan oil company closes units at Curacao refinery

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    SAN FRANCISCO, USA (Bloomberg):  Petroleos de Venezuela SA, Venezuela’s state-run oil company, closed some units May 5 at the Isla refinery on the Caribbean island of Curacao for four weeks of scheduled maintenance.

    A unit called the catalytic reformer, which increases gasoline quality, will be out of service for catalyst regeneration while a crude-distillation unit and a vacuum-distillation unit undergo maintenance, the Caracas-based company said May 4 in a statement on its website.

    The refinery will compensate for some of the reduced capacity by using a thermal cracker, which can distill light-medium crude, Petroleos said in the statement.

    Petroleos in recent weeks began advertising gasoline exports for the first time this year, as the company recovered from a series of refinery outages.

    The Isla outage won’t affect the company’s ability to fulfill international supply contracts, a spokesman who declined to give his name citing company rules said in a telephone interview on Monday.

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