06 January 1997 00:00 [Source: ACN]
UNICHEM has scaled up plans for its proposed cumene facility in Saudi Arabia. It is also looking to set up facilities for the downstream production of phenol, acetone, bisphenol A, polycarbonate (PC), methyl methacrylate (MMA) and polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA).
The cumene facility will be developed in three phases. The first phase will bring 260 000 tonne/year of capacity onstream in 1997. The second phase will double the capacity to 520 000 tonne/year in 1998. This replaces an earlier plan for the second phase for a 90-140 000 tonne/year expansion. The third phase will bring total capacity to 700 000 tonne/year after 2000.
Also planned for the third phase are downstream derivative units to be located either at Yanbu in Saudi Arabia, or in Indonesia. These will produce 100 000 tonne/year of phenol, 60 000 tonne/year of bisphenol A, and acetone PC, MMA and PMMA.
The shareholding structure for the joint venture is expected to be finalised at month-end. An earlier tentative shareholding structure was: Unichem taking 50%; Herdillia Chemicals, 25-30%; the Bukaka Group, 10-15%; and the British Offset Office, 10%. However, Phenolchemie and Sumitomo Chemicals are also potential shareholders. Unichem was unavailable for clarification.
It is understood that Herdillia Chemicals and Bukaka are to offtake 100 000 tonne/year and 160 000 tonne/year respectively from the first-phase production, and that negotiations with Phenolchemie and Sumitomo Chemical are ongoing for offtake from the second phase (ACN 25 Nov 1996, p32).
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