Valero Restarts Production in Aruba

Jun 04, 2010, 04:45 ET from Government of Aruba

ORANJESTAD, Aruba, June 4, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- The Texan oil concern Valero decided on Thursday to restart its refinery on the Caribbean island Aruba.

The production process was halted in July 2009 due to, among others, a conflict with the former government of Aruba about tax issues. About 4,000 Arubans lost their jobs when the refinery was closed down .

The new government, led by Prime Minister Mike Eman, immediately after its installation took steps to find possible take-over or joint venture partners. Talks were held with Pemex (Mexico), PetroChina (China), Petrobras (Brazil), PDVSA (Venezuela) and Rubiales (Colombia).

Parallel to these efforts, the Aruban Government worked out a package of incentives to reinforce the refinery's profitability. Those efforts have led to Valero's announcement today that the production process will be resumed within three months.

Prime Minister Mike Eman: "With this proactive and solution oriented approach Aruba shows that it is able to offer international companies a very attractive investment climate."

In its first six months in office, the new government has already booked remarkable results. American Airlines, AirFrance-KLM and Cruise Lines have resumed their service to Aruba. Now the reopening of the Valero Refinery can be added to that success.

Permanent shutdown of the refinery would have more than doubled unemployment on the island.

SOURCE Government of Aruba