Pemex business plan leaves out $10 bln Tula refinery project

MEXICO CITY Sat Nov 2, 2013 2:46pm EDT

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MEXICO CITY Nov 2 (Reuters) - Plans by Mexico's state-run oil monopoly Pemex to build a new $10 billion refinery in the eastern state of Hidalgo do not appear in the company's updated five-year business plan, but a Pemex spokesperson said on Saturday that the project has not been formally canceled.

While some local media was reporting that the refinery project had been canceled, Pemex said it had not made any such announcement.

"We have not said the project is being terminated," said a Pemex spokesperson, speaking on condition of anonymity in accordance with company policy.

First announced in 2008, the construction of the new Tula refinery with a planned processing capacity of 250,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil has been plagued by delays.

To date, only a wall enclosing the perimeter of the project has been completed at Tula, 51 miles (82 km) north of Mexico City.

In September, Pemex announced a $3.5 billion expansion of the existing refinery at Tula, the country's second biggest, near the planned the location for the new refinery.

The existing Tula refinery can process 325,000 bpd.

Pemex's updated 184-page business plan was issued on Friday and details projects from the company's four subsidiaries from 2014 through 2018.

The plan does note that gasoline projects at Pemex's Tula and Salamanca refineries "will suffer major deviations due to disagreements over the allocation process and poor contractor performance," but does not further detail the plans for the Tula refinery.

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