March 7, 2011

Shell drives Australian Bitumen Market

Shell Australia today announced a major investment in bitumen a facility to help meet demand across eastern Australia and will help supply additional bitumen for road reconstruction efforts in north west Victoria that is expected to last for a number of years.

Shell announced the construction of a new bitumen facility at Shell’s Geelong Refinery, and an upgrade of existing facilities at the company’s Pinkenba site on the Brisbane River. The $20 million investment in Geelong will include four new hot bitumen tanks and a new road gantry for loading trucks.

Bitumen is viewed as a key growth area for Shell’s Australian business and this facility will improve supply to civil contractor customers for many years to come. In a country as large as Australia there is a high demand for the bitumen used to construct roads, but Shell are expecting a spike in local demand caused by flood damage that will last for some years.

As well as expanding Shell’s bitumen capacity, the upgrade will support local manufacture of specialty products such as Shell’s Multiphalte range - the leading product for Australian airport runway surfacing. This product was recently used on both Adelaide and Melbourne airport upgrades.

Shell is working with civil contractors and road authorities across Australia to bring technologically advanced bitumen products to market. This bitumen investment is part of a much larger capital program to support Shell’s aggressive plans to grow its marketing business in Australia

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