APLA '04: Pemex to close Pajaritos unit after Morelos boost

09 November 2004 00:33  [Source: ICIS news]

BUENOS AIRES (CNI)--Mexico’s Pemex Petroquimica plans to close down its ethylene cracker in Pajaritos permanently following an expansion of its cracker in Morelos, CNI was informed on Monday.


Arturo Garcia, managing director of Pemex Petroquimica’s Phoenix project, said, “We will scrap the plant in 2007, following the start-up of the Morelos expansion.”


Pemex runs the 200 000 tonne/year cracker in Pajaritos periodically, when the company needs the additional capacity. “The Pajaritos plant is not very economical because it is too small,” Garcia explained.


The plant is currently closed, he told CNI, but it will be needed for a few months in 2006 to feed a polyethylene (PE) expansion in Morelos.


Pemex is constructing a 300 000 tonne/year swing high density polyethylene (hdPE)/linear low density polyethylene (lldPE) plant at the site, which is due onstream at the beginning of 2006.


However, the 300 000 tonne/year ethylene expansion at Morelos, which will feed the PE expansion, will only come onstream towards the end of 2006.


Therefore, Pemex intends to “get the swing plant started using ethylene from Pajaritos,” said Garcia. In addition, the company’s 100 000 tonne/year ethylene surplus, which is currently exported, will be diverted to the PE plant.


Pemex estimates the cost of the Morelos ethylene expansion, which will raise capacity to 900 000 tonne/year, at $80m (Euro62m)-$100m(Euro77.5m), said Garcia.


Construction of the Univation technology hdPE/lldPE plant is expected to cost $100m, he added.


Garcia spoke to CNI during the 24th annual Latin American Petrochemicals Association (APLA) conference, which ends Tuesday.



By: Anna Jagger
+1 713 525 2653

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