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Downstream leaders exchange know-how at PRC Europe

Over 400 decision-makers from the whole value chain gathered in Austria for the recent Petrochemical and Refining Congress: Europe 2023.

The event took place in Vienna on 22-24 May, attracting industry leaders from major companies, refineries and petrochemical plants, licensors, chemical companies, equipment manufacturers, and service providers.

Decarbonisation and defossilisation – these are the two keywords that define industry momentum, both economically and technologically as well as strategically. The question remains; what is the best way to reduce EU emissions by at least 55% by 2030; what steps have already been taken by each company, and which further measures can be deployed?

These points were addressed by global industry leaders, including OMV Downstream, Neste Corporation, MOL Group, Shell Energy & Chemical Park Rheinland, Wood, and Honeywell UOP.

The Congress was held in cooperation with OMV Downstream GmbH, Austria’s largest listed industrial company, which invited downstream industry colleagues to visit one of the largest and most modern inland refineries in Europe; OMV Schwechat Refinery.

Its representatives discussed the impact of clean hydrogen on oil and gas. They recognise the ‘fast growing potential’ for hydrogen as a clean energy source for transport, heating and industry.

Mohamed A.Elreheem, Engineering Technology Manager at Aramco Overseas Company B.V., told delegates that the energy transition will have several challenges that need to be overcome to facilitate and accelerate the business growth. Clarity of the market demand will ‘unleash huge investment capabilities’ from energy companies and other players.  

On the second day of the congress, leading entrepreneurs prepared a strategic overview on the role of alternative fuels, including synthetic, bio, electrofuels and others as one of the effective means of decarbonisation.

For example, Bob Leliveld, chief technology officer at Ketjen, believes that the availability and quality of biofuels are important in their effectiveness as a substitute for traditional fossil fuels and can vary depending mainly on the type of feedstock used for their production and the production process.

During the third day of the Congress, PRC Europe participants got an exclusive opportunity to learn about the Schwechat Refinery operations firsthand by means of a guided tour. The innovative circular economy project – ReOil – was covered in great detail.  

The next edition of the Petrochemical and Refining Congress: Europe 2024 is going to take place on 13-14 May of next year, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

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