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BP ceases production at Australian Bulwer Island refinery

[SINGAPORE] BP has ceased production at its 102,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) Bulwer Island refinery in Brisbane and is preparing to convert the site into a jet fuel import terminal, a company spokeswoman told Reuters on Wednesday.

The refinery shut its major units throughout May and has now completely ceased production, the spokeswoman added.

"The import jetty, aviation fuel tanks and associated pipelines remain operational to allow the site to transition to a jet fuel import terminal," the spokeswoman said.

The company announced the closure of the refinery in April last year, as it restructures its struggling refining and marketing business in Australia.

BP and Caltex signed an agreement under which Caltex will supply all of BP's requirements for diesel and gasoline in South Queensland. BP will import jet fuel from Asian refineries, the company has previously said.

Many of Australia's ageing refineries have shut or been converted into fuel terminals as they chalked up losses amid competition from newer mega-processing sites in Asia.

BP's refinery closure is expected to boost the country's oil product import growth in 2015 to its fastest pace in at least seven years.