Pemex’s Tula refinery resumed operations a couple of days ago after a three-week strike due to a teachers’ protest blocking roads that prevented him from dislodging fuel oil from the facility, a company source said on Friday.
The second largest refinery of the Mexican state-owned company, with a capacity of 315 thousand barrels per day (bpd) and located in the state of Hidalgo, processed in August some 146 thousand bpd of crude, mostly light, and has averaged 153 thousand bpd in so far this year, according to official Pemex data.
“Tula was back in business on Wednesday,” a company source told Reuters, who requested anonymity. Pemex did not respond to a query on the matter.
At his morning press conference, the President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) responded on Friday to a query on whether Tula was still unemployed, to which he answered “no” and that “it occurs.”
“We do not have the report of problems, maybe it is due to fuel oil, because of the blockade that exists,” he said, explaining that the protests of teachers from the state of Michoacán, due to lack of payments and that they blocked the roads, was being attended to.
“That prevents the fuel oil produced in Tula from being taken to the port of Lázaro Cárdenas in Michoacán, by train, then as there is this block of teachers that is already being resolved because we decided to pay them the fortnights they were owed”, added the president.
López Obrador called on the teachers not to repeat these actions and specified that the Tula fuel oil is being removed of the facility with trucks.
Due to the blockages, inventories have accumulated in recent weeks, reaching full capacity and forcing Pemex to cut production.
Although the state giant has a total processing capacity in its six refineries of about 1.6 million bpd, so far this year the average processing has been 690,910 bpd, according to official data.