Merapoh, China Energy JV to revive Zipy

21 Apr 2014 / 05:38 H.

    PETALING JAYA: The Yan Petroleum Industrial Zone (Zipy) looks set to be revived with the signing of a partnership agreement between Merapoh Resources Corp Sdn Bhd (Merapoh) and China Energy H City Realty Investment Co. Ltd (China Energy) this Thursday.
    The agreement will see state-owned China Energy emerging as a majority shareholder with a 70% equity interest in Merapoh and an investment of almost RM70 billion by China Energy, which will enable Merapoh to proceed with its projects and plans.
    According to a media advisory issued by Merapoh last Friday, the most immediate project that Merapoh intends to proceed with is the creation of Malaysia's biggest oil refinery complex to be built in Kedah.
    "Upon full operation of the refinery, Merapoh shall be supplying an estimated 8% of China's total need for refined oil and refined petroleum products," said Merapoh chairman Datuk Bistamam Ramli.
    Merapoh had in the past signed a memorandum of agreement with the Kedah state government in 2009 for the development of a US$10 billion (RM32.38 billion) refinery project in Yan, Kedah. The project was to comprise a two-train refinery with a total capacity of 350,000 barrels per day.
    According to past reports, Merapoh executive chairman Md Nazri Ramli said the project would involve the reclamation of offshore land totaling 340ha, and the use of 40ha on-shore land.
    It was also reported that Merapoh would import crude petroleum oil from the Middle East and process the crude into refined products which would then be exported to China and other Asian nations.
    A tie-up with China's state oil company China National Petroleum Company was established to market Merapoh's refinery products for 20 years.
    Korea's SK group of companies through its subsidiary SK Engineering & Construction was appointed to do the engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning of the project.
    Zipy was first announced in 2007 by the then Barisan Nasional state government. It was renamed Sungai Limau Hydrocarbon Hub (Sulihh) by PAS which took over the state administration after the 12th General Election in 2008.
    In August last year, Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir said the state government was keen to revive Zipy but several matters had to be resolved first including land acquisition, investment partner of Merapoh, project developer and source of crude oil.
    Mukhriz had said that a company from China had shown interest to invest in the area.
    A check with the Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM) shows that Merapoh was registered in September 2005 and is currently in winding up status.
    Petrobanq Sdn Bhd and Nazri are listed as shareholders of Merapoh, with Petrobanq being the major shareholder and Nazri holding only one share. Nazri is also listed as a director of the company.
    Meanwhile, a check on Petrobanq showed that it is a dormant company with Nazri listed as its director and major shareholder. The other two shareholders are Mohd Saiful Aswad Abu Bakar and Mohd Hassan Mansor.

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