Israel Govt. May Secure Part Ownership of Haifa Oil Refineries

The Government of Israel may join British industrialist Isaac Wolfson in ownership and operation of the Haifa oil refineries for which Mr. Wolfson is currently negotiating, it was reported today in informed circles here.

Despite earlier reports that the deal had been closed between Mr. Wolfson and British Shell and other companies which have an interest in the Haifa plants, it was stated today that there are still some matters to be settled. Israel Treasury sources said that the $7,000,000 figure for which the refineries were reportedly to be sold was “a considerably exaggerated figure.”

Currently, the Haifa refineries are producing at about one-third capacity, providing petroleum products for Israel use alone. After the purchase, it is understood, the plants will be operated to their maximum capacity and the difference between Israel’s need for 1,330,000 tons of oil products and the 4,000,000 ton capacity will be exported.

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