Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Malaysia wants to bypass Malacca Strait with pipeline

An alternative to the Malacca Strait with all its problems discussed here:
Malaysia will begin construction of two oil refinery plants and a pipeline cutting across northern Malaysia in August, a project that will offer an alternative to the Malacca Strait in transporting oil from the Middle East to China and Japan.

The official news agency Bernama quoted northern Kedah State Chief Minister Mahdzir Khalid as saying that under the 50 billion ringgit ($14.5 billion) project, one oil refinery plant will be built in Yan in the west coast of Kedah and another in Bachok in the northeastern Kelantan State, with a pipeline linking both.

Tankers carrying oil from the Middle East will be able to anchor off Kedah, with their oil cargos being pumped through the 320-kilometer-long pipeline to Kelantan to be loaded into tankers from neighboring countries like China, Japan, or South Korea.

Mahdzir was quoted as saying that two local companies -- SKS Development Sdn. Bhd. and Merapoh Resources Corporation Sdn. Bhd. --will build the oil refinery plants while another local company Trans-Peninsula Petroleum Sdn. Bhd. will construct the pipeline.

The first phase of the project, the building of the refinery plants, is expected to begin in August.
Of course, the best part (emphasis added):
Funding will not be a problem as the project has attracted investments from the National Iranian Oil Co., which will partner with SKS Development in the construction of the oil refinery plant.

Investments are also coming in from Saudi Arabia and China, Mahdzir said.
Orange line on map shows possible pipeline route, based on my very own SWAG.

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