NPRA '02: Pemex chief denies BASF styrene deal is close

26 March 2002 16:10  [Source: ICIS news]

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (CNI)--The head of Mexico's state-run petrochemicals conglomerate, Pemex Petroquimica, emphatically denied here that Petroquimica is close to signing a deal with BASF for a new 500 000 tonne/year styrene facility in Mexico.

Petroquimica president Rafael Beverido Lomelin told CNI here that BASF had approached his company with the project but that he has yet to approve the proposed deal. "They would like to pursue this project with Petroquimica, but I must say that no decision has been made yet with regard to this project."

He confirmed the basic parameters of the project, a 500 000 tonne unit to be built at a cost of some $120m (Euro136m).

And he said he hoped to have a decision about the new styrene plant "before the end of this year."

However, Beverido Lomelin said he was very surprised by a report from Mexico City in CNI on Sunday (24 March) in which Alejandro Villalobos, president of the Mexican Institute of Chemical Engineers (IMIQ) and a former Pemex executive, said there were "positive signals" for a deal between Petroquimica and BASF on the styrene plant.

Beverido Lomelin addressed the BASF styrene issue at a press conference at the 27th annual International Petrochemicals Conference (IPC). Sponsored by the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), the IPC concludes Tuesday.

By: Joe Kamalick
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