Croatia: Rijeka refinery gets environmental permit for its modernization project

, SEE Energy News

The modernization project of Rijeka refinery envisages the construction of a coking complex with a port, storage and transport system for coke. Croatian Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development issued a positive decision on oil company INA’s project to modernize the Rijeka refinery, related to the assessment of the impact of this investment on the environment.

According to a report submitted by INA, the main goals of INA regarding the oil refinery in Rijeka, which are planned to be achieved in the planned second phase of modernization, namely the implementation of the Heavy Residue Treatment Program, are higher production of low-sulfur petrol and diesel, halt of heavy fuel oil production, reduction of total harmful emissions into the environment and production of fuels in line with the latest EU standards. INA estimated that the coke processing plant could be operational in 2023. Total investment in Rijeka refinery modernization would reach 530 million euros.

The final decision of INA’s Management Board and the Supervisory Board on the launch of the second phase of modernization of the Rijeka refinery was made last December.

This investment is a part of INA’s 2023 downstream program, along with the transformation of its other oil refinery in Sisak into an industrial site, effectively closing the plant. The program is focused on ensuring sustainability and profitability of refining and marketing operations, as well as the whole company through changes of the current downstream business model. Although the refinery in Sisak will be closed, it will still remain a valuable par of INA’s operation and a major employer. The alternatives for Sisak would include the development of bio-component refining and petrochemical production conditional to viable business case, and positive development of EU and Croatian legislation. It would also include a modern logistics hub, bitumen, renewables, lubricant production or other sustainable and economically viable operations.