5 August 2016
By Bryan Smyth
Fine Gael Cork Senator, Jerry Buttimer has said that the announcement by Canadian firm Irving Oil that it has signed a Sales and Purchase Agreement with Phillips 66, for the purchase of the Whitegate oil refinery, is very welcome.
“Irving Oil operates Canada’s largest refinery in Saint John, New Brunswick, as well as wholesale distribution and retail businesses. In a statement, Ian Whitcomb, President of the company, said that the Whitegate refinery has a tremendous reputation as a vital and secure supplier to the Irish market, and they will uphold that commitment very proudly and very seriously.
“The company has said it will continue the full operation of the Whitegate refinery, including maintaining its existing workforce. Whitegate processes up to 75,000 barrels of crude oil per day and produces petrol, diesel and kerosene. It employs 160 people, as well as many contract personnel.
“I have met with the Whitegate workers and I will be watching closely to ensure that Irwing Oil’s commitment to maintaining the existing workforce is met.
“Whitegate is the only refinery on the island of Ireland and currently supplies up to 40% of the main products on the market. It is of huge economic importance to Cork, and to the country, in terms of security of oil supply. The news that the sale process, which started some months ago, has resulted in an agreement is very positive, for Cork and for the country in general.”