North Sea oil pipeline upgrade halted until next year

The decision was taken because of ongoing government restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Coronavirus has halted plans to close and upgrade a North Sea oil pipeline until spring 2021.

Chemicals giant Ineos was to shut the Forties Pipeline System (FPS) in June this year to upgrade it.

Last month it was announced the upgrade would be delayed until at least August 2020.

It was confirmed today that the planned shutdown of the system will now be delayed further until Spring 2021.

The decision was taken in the face of ongoing government restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic and in the interests of providing clarity to customers.

A statement from Ineos said: “Ineos FPS has today written to all its customers saying that there will be a delay to the FPS Summer Shutdown that was planned for June 16 2020. 

“The shutdown will now be scheduled for spring 2021.

“Ineos found that there was a desire to delay the shutdown to 2021 by the majority of its customers which it is responding to. 

“In making this announcement it is hoped that customers and the supply chain will now be able to plan with greater certainty.

“Ineos FPS will communicate the exact start date of the shutdown to its customers as soon as it is able to.”