Murco sale collapse a "devastating blow"
Wed, 5th November 2014

Murco sale collapse a "devastating blow"

The Welsh Government has described the collapse of sale talks regarding the Murco oil refinery in Milford Haven as a "devastating blow".

Swiss industrial company Klesch Group agreed to purchase the oil refinery for an undisclosed sum earlier this year, potentially safeguarding 400 jobs.

But the deal fell through after conditions were not met by the 31 October deadline. According to the BBC, only 60 jobs will remain at the refinery.

It comes after the breakdown of £300m sale talks between Murco owner Murphy Oil and private-equity fund Greybull Capital in April.

"This is a devastating blow to staff at the Murco refinery and companies within the refinery's supply chain, as well as the local communities around Milford Haven," said economy minister Edwina Hart.

"Murco has been integral to the fabric of the oil and gas infrastructure in Wales and the Welsh economy for many years.

"This news is especially disappointing as the Welsh Government did everything we could to support the success of this deal. Working with close co-operation from UK government departments Welsh Government officials have been fully engaged with both parties at the highest levels for many months to try to secure the ongoing operation of the refinery and protect the jobs at the Milford Haven site.

"We have been working with management at Murco since 2010 to try to maximise the opportunities for the sale of the refinery. In April I established a task force to marshal support from high level stakeholders for the maintenance of refinery operations at the site for the future. The work of this task force will carry on to maximise the opportunities for employment at the site."

Wales Office minister Baroness Randersonsaid: "Both the UK and Welsh Government have worked tirelessly throughout this process to try to secure the future of the refinery and it is regrettable that ultimately a buyer has not been able to reach a deal with Murphy Oil.

"Supporting the staff at Murco is now our immediate concern and we stand ready to assist in any way we can."

A statement from Murphy Oil said the refinery is now in a period of shut down and it will be decommissioned and operated solely as a petroleum storage and distribution terminal.

It added that it will continue to seek a buyer for the terminal.

category Wales  |  source Insider Media