China port group launches major pipeline in oil hub Shandong

(Reuters) - China's Yantai Port Group started on Monday pumping oil into a newly expanded crude oil pipeline that connects the port of Yantai to a group of independent refineries in the country's refining hub Shandong, state media reported on Tuesday.

The 370-kilometer (229.91 mile) pipeline, with an annual transport capacity of 20 MMt (400,000 barrels per day), is solely invested by Yantai Port Group, a unit of provincial government-backed Shandong Port Group.

The new line, linking Yantai with city of Weifang, adds to an existing parallel 650-km pipeline connecting Yantai with Zibo, bringing total transport capacity to 40 MMt annually, or 800,000 bpd.

About ten independent refineries are linked to the two pipelines, according to Shandong-based commodities consultancy JLC.

As part of commodities logistics operations, Yantai Port also operates a 300,000-tonnage crude oil terminal and a 3.6 MMcm(23 million barrels) crude oil tank farm.

Yantai is also China's largest port for fertiliser and bauxite, according to the group's website.

(Reporting by Chen Aizhu, Editing by Louise Heavens)

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