Sinopec cuts petchem op rates to up fuel supply

03 June 2008 09:45  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--Sinopec has cut its ethylene output from 1 June and plans to reduce production of other petrochemicals to ensure the availability of oil products for the Beijing Olympics and for the recovery efforts in Sichuan, it said in its online newsletter Sinopecnews on Tuesday.

Ethylene production would be reduced by 65,000 tonnes or 11% of the company’s monthly production capacity. This would lead to a 200,000-tonne surplus in oil product output arising from a fall in naphtha production in the crude fractional distillation process.

The firm planned to temporarily shut down or bring forward the maintenance turnarounds at its Zhongyuan, Dongfang and Shanghai No 1 and 2 ethylene units.

It would also reduce operating rates at Yanshan Petrochemical, Qilu Petrochemical, Maoming Petrochemical, Tianjin Petrochemcial, Guangzhou Petrochemical and Shanghai Secco Petrochemical, it added.

In addition, Sinopec was looking to cut its monthly aromatics output volume by 8% in June, but no details on the affected units and capacities were provided.

In May 2008, South Korean oil major SK Energy invested won (W)1,000bn ($977m) for a 30-35% stake in its 800,000 tonne/year ethylene cracker joint venture with Sinopec.

Sinopec has three other crackers in the Fujian, Tianjin and Zhejiang provinces that are scheduled to be completed by 2010.

($1=W1,024)

Judith Wang contributed to this story

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By: Serene Cheong
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