Report: Kazakh refinery damaged in fire

Associated Press

ALMATY, Kazakhstan (AP) — Media in Kazakhstan are reporting that a major oil-refining plant in the southern city of Shymkent has been damaged in a fire.

They say the scale of the damage is not yet clear, but the blaze may further deepen occasional fuel deficits in the former Soviet Central Asian nation.

The plant in Shymkent is one of three oil refineries in Kazakhstan. In spite of its vast oil reserves, Kazakhstan suffers fuel shortages due to limited refinery capacity.

The Shymkent refinery, which is controlled by government energy company KazMunaiGas, was commissioned in 1985 and is able to process up to 6 million tons of oil annually.