Qatar Petroleum, ExxonMobil sign agreement for petchem plant

06 January 2010 10:39  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS news)--Qatar Petroleum and ExxonMobil Chemical Qatar, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil Corporation, have signed an agreement to begin the development of a world-scale petrochemical complex at Ras Laffan Industrial City, Qatar, the Middle Eastern producer said on Wednesday.

The proposed complex would include the world's largest steam cracker and polyethylene plants, and one of the world's largest ethylene glycol plants, Qatar Petroleum said. Production would have a particular focus on the growing Asia markets, the company added. 

“This agreement represents another important step to achieve the vision of His Highness the Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, for the optimal utilisation of the country’s natural resources,” said Abdullah bin Hamad Al-Attiyah, Qatar Petroleum's chairman, at a signing ceremony held in Doha.

Steve Pryor, president of ExxonMobil, said: "Teams from Qatar Petroleum and ExxonMobil have worked together to develop a leading-edge project that will meet the growing global demand for petrochemical products."

Qatar Petroleum said in a statement that the petrochemical complex would include a 1.6m tonne/year steam cracker, two 650,000 tonne/year gas phase polyethylene plants, and a 700,000 tonne/year ethylene glycol plant.

The start-up of the proposed facility, which would employ ExxonMobil's proprietary steam cracking furnace, polyethylene process and polyethylene product technologies, was estimated to begin operations in the fourth quarter of 2015.

The project would use feedstock from gas development projects in Qatar's North Field, where the two companies have together been expanding facilities in order to deliver liquefied natural gas resources to targeted markets, Qatar Petroleum added.

Bryan Milton, vice president of ExxonMobil’s basic chemicals unit, confirmed to ICIS news in May 2009 that the company had been holding talks with its joint venture partner Qatar Petroleum for a petrochemical complex at Ras Laffan.

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By: Franco Capaldo
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