CORYTON REFINERY, England
There's no credible bid for Petroplus Holdings AG's Coryton refinery in England to operate it as a refinery, and the first 180 redundancies are planned by the end of next week, the administrator PricewaterhouseCoopers and the chairman of Unite labor union at Coryton said Monday.
Approximately 100 more jobs will be cut in July, with the rest by September, said Unite's Russell Jackson.
PricewaterhouseCoopers, the administrator of Petroplus's U.K. subsidiaries, confirmed Monday in a statement that around 180 staff will be made redundant next week, adding that "there would likely be a substantial number of redundancies from the 500 workforce."
PWC said: "Following cessation of refining activities last week, the program to safely wind down operations at the refinery continues."
It is highly unlikely Coryton will be sold as a refinery, but talks with "various parties who have expressed an interest in acquiring the Coryton site" continue, PWC said.
There is a high possibility a deal to turn the 220,000-barrel-a-day facility into a terminal will be struck, Mr. Jackson said.
Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSA), Royal Vopak NV and Greenergy Ltd. are the main joint bidder to turn Coryton into a terminal, and Shell is the major party in the bid at this stage, Mr. Jackson said.
Vopak was not immediately available to comment on the issue, while Greenergy and Shell declined to comment.
The terminal bid is of a greater value than the refinery bids the administrator had, said Mr. Jackson who worked at the refinery for 29 years.
Before Petroplus lost access to all its credit lines and then filed for insolvency in January, Coryton was supplying around 10% of the U.K.'s fuel market.
(Sarah Kent in London contributed to this article.)
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