NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Oil Corp has extended a shutdown of a hydrocracker unit at its 150,000 barrels per day (bpd) Haldia refinery in West Bengal, forcing it to export the vaccum gasoil, it said in a statement on Wednesday.
"The hydrocracker unit at Haldia Refinery has been undergoing a planned shutdown, which is being extended due to a problem in one of the plant equipments," it said in response to a Reuters' email seeking comments.
The company did not specify when the hydrocracker would be operational. "It may take more than a month to be fixed," a source privy to the development said, adding the unit has been shut down for about a month.
IOC, India's biggest refiner, recently imported gasoil, leading to traders speculating that overseas purchases could continue until the hydrocracker was back up and running.
The state refiner, however, said that imports of gasoil are based on demand and supply dynamics, especially as it prepares in advance for the introduction of Euro IV compliant fuels in the country from April.
"Considering this planned shutdown, the availability of the product has already been taken care of in the overall corporate planning for meeting its requirement," IOC said.
(Reporting by Nidhi Verma; Editing by Susan Fenton)