HOUSTON (Reuters) - A planned transfer of a 112,229 barrel-per-day (bpd) refinery in Pasadena, Texas, to Chevron Corp from Brazil’s state oil company Petrobras stalled on Monday, one day after units were shut at the Houston-area refinery, sources familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.
Chevron announced in January it would buy the Pasadena Refining System Inc (PRSI) plant owned by Petrobras for $350 million.
“We expected them to take over on Monday,” one of the sources said on Tuesday.
Last week, the Brazilian flag and a Petrobras flag were not visible on flag poles in front of the Pasadena refinery. Both have been flying there since Petrobras took over sole ownership of the plant in 2012.
On Tuesday, a Petrobras sign in front of the refinery was covered up.
“We continue to expect the PRSI transaction to close in the first half of 2019,” said Chevron spokesman Braden Reddall on Tuesday.
A Petrobras spokeswoman did not reply to messages on Tuesday seeking to comment
On Sunday, PRSI filed notices with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) that the electrostatic precipitator (ESP) and the 56,000 bpd gasoline-producing fluidic catalytic cracking unit (FCCU) at the Pasadena refinery were shut for required maintenance.
Energy industry intelligence service Genscape said the refinery’s 100,000 bpd crude distillation unit and a 23,000 bpd catalytic reformer were also shut on Sunday at the refinery.
The Pasadena refinery was at the center of a corruption probe by the Brazilian government into Petrobras. The company paid more than $1 billion for the plant by the time it took sole ownership in 2012.
In addition to the refinery, Chevron is buying a terminal, land surrounding the refinery and a trading company owned by PRSI.
Chevron is buying the Pasadena plant to run sweet crude oil it produces in Texas. It will be the second Gulf Coast refinery owned by the company.
The CDU does the primary breakdown of crude oil into hydrocarbon feedstocks for all other production units. The reformer produces octane-boosting chemicals added to gasoline.
An ESP removes fine catalyst particles from the emissions of the unit. The catalyst is used to convert gas oil into gasoline within an FCCU.
Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Marguerita Choy and David Gregorio