Monday, November 05, 2007

China plans to build refinery in Costa Rica

China National Petroleum Corp. plans to build a refinery in Costa Rica to supply Central American markets, according to Chinese state media.

The official Shanghai Securities News, citing CNPC sources, said the agreement was concluded during a visit of Costa Rica President Oscar Arias to China.

Before his trip, Arias told Costa Rica's La Nacion newspaper that one of the most important goals of his visit would be to reach a refinery agreement.

Arias said the refinery proposal would allow Costa Rica to meet its own fuel needs and to export products.

The Shanghai Securities News report said the proposed refinery will process heavy oil from Venezuela.

Arias told Mexican Reforma newspaper, in an interview that the agreement with China means the chances for completion of an earlier Mexican refinery project in Costa Rica "have now been significantly reduced."

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox was planning to build an oil refinery in Costa Rica as part of a regional energy program during his six-year tenure that ended in 2006.

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