Chinese CNCEC shows interest in the construction of a gas turbine power plant in Atyrau

Special correspondent of the "News" department
The Chinese company may take part in the construction of a gas turbine power plant at the Atyrau refinery / Photo: and Wikimedia Commons

According to KazMunayGas (KMG), the national oil company in Kazakhstan, it is interested in the construction of a gas turbine power plant (GTPP) at the Atyrau Oil Refinery (ANPZ) as well as the Chinese CNCEC.

«During his visit to Beijing, Chairman of the Board of KMG Magzum Mirzagaliyev met with Zhiyuan Lu, the regional director in CNCEC. The two sides have discussed current and potential joint projects, including the construction of a GTPP at the Atyrau refinery (ANPZ), a project in which both parties are interested,» the company said in a statement.

As Mirzagaliyev noted, KMG and its partners from CNCEC have reached a general understanding of how the project must be implemented, including the stages of designing, constructing and financing the facility.

«The excess power produced by the plant will be directed to meet the needs of residents of the Atyrau region. This is very important,» the official said.

Once the construction of GTPP is over, it will raise the reliability of the external power supply for the new part of the ANPZ and minimize the risk of equipment shutdown and discharge of gas to flare devices during emergencies. The capacity of the future plant is expected at 154 megawatt hours. Kazakhstan wants to pick a partner for the project and sign an agreement with a potential investor by the end of this year.

«Our company confirms its commitment to the joint project with KMG. We are currently discussing with our Kazakhstani colleagues the best options for the project execution on mutually beneficial terms,» Lu said in this regard.

CNCEC had already worked with KMG as it acted as an EPC contractor for the construction of the Kazakhstan Petrochemical Industries Inc. (KPI) plant in Atyrau.

On July 3, the Atyrau refinery reported serious problems with the power grid. As a result of the accident, almost every refinery unit was stopped, except for the ELOU-AT-2 unit (atmospheric-vacuum pipe still which is part of the crude oil distillation process). At 6:47 p.m., the refinery reported a complete power blackout.

Because KEGOC stopped sending energy to the new substation of the Atyrau refinery due to the power failure, all the plant facilities except the crude oil distillation unit, stopped working. The failure also hit regular consumers in the Mangystau and Atyrau regions as well as several KMG oil fields in the area.

The MAEK power plant also reported problems. For instance, its 130 megawatt power unit #1 was stopped. This caused a decline in the network frequency by 2.5 times. As a result, the Mangystau and Atyrau power centers, the Atyrau thermal power station, the Karabatan Utility Solutions combined cycle power plant and gas-fired power stations in Kalamkas and Tengiz were forced to operate in an isolated manner. Residents of Atyrau were cut off from power for a while. Now, the national oil company wants GTPP at the refinery to ensure that this situation won’t ever happen again.

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