03 August 1998 00:00 [Source: ACN]
Shell Chemicals may invest in the ethylene glycol (EG) project currently being assessed by the Singapore Economic Development Board and Multikarsa Investama.
An MoU between Multikarsa and Shell was signed a few months ago, ACN was told.
Some industry sources said Shell is likely to withdraw its joint-venture plans with Mobil if Shell decides to go ahead with the investment, because of the expected limit placed on its investment funds.
However, other industry sources argued that the EG project and the Mobil venture are unrelated and that funding should not be an obstacle because Shell has huge financial resources.
A source said Shell may offtake from the EG joint venture in order to expand its subsidiary Ethylene Glycols Singapore (EGS). But EGS said it has no current expansion plans, except to debottleneck its ethylene oxide (EO) plant by 10 000 tonne/year. Total capacity will be raised to 100 000 tonne/year by mid-1999. The company now produces 45 000 tonne/year of EO, 122 000 tonne/year EG and 35 000 tonne/year of EO derivatives.
EGS is 70% owned by Shell and 30% by Japan Singapore EOG.
SemPolysindo, the former joint venture which first proposed the EG project, had then considered Shell technology for the 300 000 tonne/year project.
Shell was also interested in expanding the project to tap an additional 100 000 tonne/ year of EO. There is flexibility for the project to produce either EO or EG.
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