bp has unveiled plans to close an Australian oil refinery after 65 years of operation as it is no longer economically viable.
The oil giant said the Kwinana refinery will be converted to a fuel import terminal.
The company expects the refining activities of the site, which currently employs 650 people, to wind down in the next six months.
In addition to investing in an import terminal, bp is also exploring options for the site including the construction of a potential clean energy hub.
bp Australia Head of Country Frédéric Baudry said: “Today’s decision to cease refining is a difficult one and not in any way a result of local policy settings. It comes in response to the long-term structural changes to the regional fuels market.
“Converting to an import terminal will not impact the safe and reliable supply of quality fuel products to Western Australia. However, it will require fewer people to run. We deeply regret the job losses that will result and will do everything we can to support our people through the transition.”
The Kwinana refinery, which was constructed by the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company and completed in 1955, is considered to be the largest oil refinery in Australia with a capacity of 146,000 barrels per day.