(EnergyAsia, June 28 2012, Thursday) — The Thai government has approved a plan to invest around 200-billion baht to raise the country’s emergency oil stockpile to meet 90 days of consumption, up from the current level of 60 days, said Energy Minister Arak Chonlathanont. (US$1=32 baht).

While details including the location and type of storage operations are still being worked out, the government said it will need at least four years to boost the stockpile for both crude and products to the new level.

Mr Arak added that the government will have to draft and approve new legislation on the management and operations of the expanded stockpile to deal with possible supply disruptions to Thailand’s 800,000 b/d domestic oil market.

Of the current 60-day stockpile, the government has set aside 36 days as legal reserves, nine days to meet working demand and 15 days as refined products and local crude supplies.

The government’s announcement came after it had completed a study on the country’s oil stockpile in response to International Energy Agency (IEA) suggestion last year that Thailand needed to update its supply disruption plan.

Separately, the government has approved a plan by state oil and gas firm PTT Plc to expand its tank farm in Chonburi province in the Gulf of Thailand.

The company is proposing to invest 48.5-billion baht to expand the capacity of its 120,000-tonne terminal to store liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to 500,000 tonnes in two phases. The expansion will facilitate the country’s long-term plan to raise the share of natural gas to more than half its total energy mix by 2030.