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Shell opens new lubricants facility in Tuas, its third largest globally

Shell Tuas Lubricants Plant2.jpg
Shell Tuas Lubricants Plant is Shell’s second-largest lubricant plant in Asia-Pacific and third-largest in the world.

ROYAL Dutch Shell opened an integrated lubricants and grease production plant in Singapore on Wednesday (Nov 1) - its third largest lubricants facility globally, and second largest in the Asia-Pacific.

The facility, which can produce up to 430 million litres (390,000 tonnes) of lubricants and greases every year, is located next to the Singapore Lube Park in Tuas. It will replace Shell's current 240,000 tonne per annum (tpa) facility in Woodlands.

The Lube Park - a shared-facilities joint venture between Shell, Sinopec and Total - comprises an import-export jetty, pipelines and a 159,000 cubic metre tank farm. Sinopec had also opened a 100,000 tpa facility costing S$134 million on an adjacent site in 2013, while Total launched a S$150 million blending plant with a capacity of 310,000 tpa in 2015.

Huibert Vigeveno, executive vice-president for Shell global commercial division, said that the state-of-the-art, highly automated facility was built to support Shell's business ambitions in the Asia-Pacific.

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"It serves as a strategic production hub, and will be the centrepiece of our lubricants supply chain network to reliably supply our world-class lubricants to millions of customers in the region," he said. "This facility will also further strengthen our marine lubricant business's presence in Singapore, the world's second busiest port."

Products from the plant - including passenger car motor oil branded as Shell Helix, and heavy duty engine oil known as Shell Rimula - will be shipped to more than 40 countries, mainly in the Asia-Pacific. The region accounts for more than 40 per cent of the global market for finished lubricants.

Shell operates 50 lubricants blending and grease manufacturing plants globally. In Asia, it has 16 plants in China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, South Korea and Vietnam. Three out of its five base oil plants are also in this region.

Lim Kok Kiang, assistant managing director of the Economic Development Board, said that Shell's commitment to improve productivity through the adoption of innovative technologies is aligned with the strategies of the industry transformation map for the energy and chemicals sector.

"With a 50 per cent increase in capacity and sixfold improvement in productivity over its previous plant, the new plant will be yet another great showcase of an advanced manufacturing facility that provides Singaporeans with good jobs," he said.

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