x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Yemen refinery shuts down after tribesmen damage pipeline

The Aden Oil Refinery Company says it has shut down its refinery, which employs 4,000 people, because it could not get crude oil after tribesmen damaged a pipeline.

SANAA // The Aden Oil Refinery Company shut down its operation because tribesmen have damaged the pipeline that provides oil to the refinery.

An official at the company said yesterday on condition of anonymity that the refinery, which employs 4,000 people, was shut down because it could not get crude oil from Marib province. He said the refinery, which usually produces 120,000 barrels per day, recently reduced its production to 30,000 barrels per day.

The pipeline, which carries crude from Marib to the port of Ras Eisa on the Red Sea, has been pierced several times recently by tribesmen. The pipeline was damaged six times last month and the last reported attack was Friday night.

The official expected a serious fuel shortage to hit the Yemeni market soon.

"They are now using the fuel on the stock but there will be a serious shortage if the pipeline is not fixed immediately," the official said.

Attacks against the country's pipeline network have disrupted the Aden Refinery and caused nationwide shortages since protests against President Ali Abdullah Saleh started this year. The Al Shabwan tribe in March blew up part of the pipeline and disrupted the production until it was resumed in August.

malqadhi@thenational.ae