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Production at Imperial refinery expected t
CALGARY _ Imperial Oil Ltd.'s (TSX:IMO) incoming chief executive says the company will focus on improving its refining operations and that problems at its Strathcona refinery near Edmonton are just days away from being fixed.

Bruce March, who takes over from Tim Hearn as CEO of the major integrated oil and gas company at the end of the month, said he would rather expand capacity at Imperial's four refineries than build a fifth one.

``The future of refining is to expand the capacity that we have. That's much more economically done over time than building new grass-roots refining capacity,'' March told reporters Wednesday.

Imperial, which is 70 per cent owned by U.S. energy giant ExxonMobil, does not intend to build an upgrader to process bitumen from its planned 300,000-barrel-a-day Kearl oilsands project in Northern Alberta. Instead the feedstock from the site will be processed at other Canadian refineries and any upgraders that have spare capacity.

``I think we're in an excellent position to look at our
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