Formosa Petchem 2007 ethylene output to rise 45%

04 April 2007 08:39  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Formosa Petrochemical has targeted a 45% rise in ethylene production this year to reach 2.758m tonnes after posting higher 2006 olefins operating profit, a company official said on Wednesday.


Operating profit at its olefins segment rose 4% to New Taiwan dollar (NT$) 18.1bn ($546.5m) from a year ago on higher volume and prices.


The Taiwanese refining and chemicals major operated its crackers at more than 100% last year and ethylene production reached 1.902m tonnes.


It will start up its new 1.2m tonne/year cracker in Mailiao in the second quarter.


Other segments in the company did not perform well. Its refining operating profit fell 19% to NT$29.5bn even though revenue rose 19% to NT$424.7bn.


Operating profit at another segment, which covers other products such as butadiene, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), fell 46% to NT$200m.


At group level, its operating profit fell 13% to NT$53.4bn while revenue rose 19% to NT$529.5bn.


In 2007, Formosa has aimed to increase its refinery throughout by 9.7% to 471,000 bbl/day. Its refining capacity has reached 510,000 bbl/day in 2006 with naphtha and refinery grade propylene (RGP) output at 22% and 4.6% respectively.


Formosa’s RGP output will reach 6% when its refinery capacity is raised to 520,000 bbl/day, according to a company official, adding that naphtha’s percentage output will be unchanged.


Capacity of the refinery will reach 540,000 bbl/day in the second quarter of 2008. The company will also complete its 10,000 bbl/day base oil project in Mailiao at the same time.


Formosa will need to buy at least half of its naphtha to feed its crackers and it could use some LPG feedstock, depending on the prices, the official said.


($1 = NT$33.12)
By: Florence Tan
+65 6780 4359

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