Bangladesh’s sole purifier Eastern Refinery has said it is incapable of processing Russian crude oil with its age-old machinery.
The state refinery informed Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation about its inability after testing 14 samples sent by Russia, the facility’s Managing Director Mohammad Lokman said on Wednesday.
The BPC will now give its opinion to the power, energy and mineral resources ministry. BPC Chairman ABM Azad did not take calls for comments.
Russia offered to sell crude oil to Bangladesh in May at lower than usual rates amid Western sanctions over the war in Ukraine.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid had said at the time the Eastern Refinery cannot process Russian crude.
Bangladesh generally purchases crude from Saudi Aramco and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. Kuwait, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, China, Indonesia, Thailand and India supply refined oil to Bangladesh.
As Bangladesh is now exploring the option to buy refined fuel oil from Russia, it sent samples of crude oil for tests by the end of August.
Eastern Refinery MD Lokman said their machinery is not suitable for Russian crude because it is more dense than the oil imported from the Middle East.
The Russian crude also has less diesel in the mid-layer and gasoline in the upper layer, which caused problems, he said.