Braskem board gives green light to green PE project

18 December 2008 00:23  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Braskem’s board of directors has approved construction of a green polyethylene (PE) project that will produce the plastic from sugarcane ethanol, the Brazilian company said on Wednesday.

The reais (Rs) 500m ($216m) project will produce ethylene and polyethylene and is scheduled to start operations in 2011 at the Southern Petrochemical Complex in Rio Grande do Sul state, the company said.

Braskem has finished the basic design of the project and construction will begin in early 2009, the company said.

“The company has already made firm reservations for the project's critical equipment, such as the feed gas compressor and refrigeration compressor, which are high-technology equipment that must be ordered in advance to ensure the project timetable is met,” Braskem said in a statement.

Braskem said it will finance 30% of the project with its own funds and seek outside financing for the rest.

“With demand identified at approximately 600,000 tons, mainly in the international market, the green polyethylene will command a premium of between 15% and 30% over the price of polyethylene made from non-renewable raw materials,” the company said.

“A project like this offers excellent opportunities for the development of plastic products made from renewable raw materials, a field in which Brazil has natural competitive advantages and high potential demand," said Braskem CEO Bernado Gradin.  

($1 = R2.31)

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By: Brian Ford
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