Despite $659m sovereign guarantee, important steps still needed to save Ivory Coast’s SIR refinery

The Ivorian government has made a ” sovereign bond issue of CFAF 388 billion (approximately $ 659 million) for the banks and financial institutions that participated in the restructuring of the RREC “. This was announced by the Ivorian Prime Minister, Amadou Gon Coulibaly, on the occasion of the official restart of the hydrocracker of the only refinery of Ivory Coast, at the end of last week.

A unit for refining crude oils into lighter products, this hydrocracker was indeed damaged during a fire that occurred in January 2017. An incident that was a real blow for this refinery, which has been experiencing significant financial difficulties for about a year. decade.

However, the return to service of this important tool and the efforts made by the Ivorian authorities do not mean the end of the turbulence for the Ivorian Refining Company (SIR). And as the Ivorian Minister of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energies, Cisse Abdourahmane, pointed out, “the future challenges to prevent the closure of the SIR are still immense”.

These include increasing petroleum production capacity, producing cleaner fuels before 2024, and reclaiming market share in the sub-region.

Created on October 3, 1962, the SIR has an annual refining capacity of 3.8 million tons of crude oil. However, since 2008, it has faced significant difficulties because of the violent oil crises that have generated financial debts.

A situation that pushed in 2016, the Ivorian government to set up a rescue plan and restructuring of this public company. This allowed the SIR to achieve a net income of 45.4 billion FCFA ($ 76.4 million) in 2017 against a negative result the previous year (-8.3 billion FCFA). As for the result of 2018, it was 23.8 billion FCFA (about 40.5 million $).

 

Source: Agence Ecofin

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