China’s NDRC issues initial permit for Sinopec-KPC project

19 May 2010 09:31  [Source: ICIS news]

SHANGHAI (ICIS news)--China’s top economic planning body, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), has issued an initial permit for a joint-venture refinery and petrochemical complex between Sinopec and Kuwait Petroleum Corp (KPC) in Guangdong province, a local official said on Wednesday.

Under the initial permit issued on 14 May, both firms could build the mega project at a newly chosen site in Zhanjiang in the province, and were able to continue carrying out preliminary work, an official from the Zhanjiang Development and Reform Bureau said.

“It is just an initial permission to allow the complex to go forward, but it is still unknown when the final approval will be released,” the official told ICIS news.

KPC's chief executive said in early March that approval was expected to be obtained by the end of the year, according to Reuters.

The $9bn (7.38bn) joint-venture project - which includes a 15m tonne/year refinery, a 1m tonne/year cracker and other chemical units - was forced to relocate to Zhanjiang from the earlier planned site in Nansha, also in the province, last year because of environmental concerns.

In addition, the project's feasibility study and environmental impact assessment had been submitted to NDRC and the Ministry of Environmental Protection respectively, to seek their approvals, according to a newsletter published on the Zhanjiang government website on Tuesday.

The project in the south of Guangdong province is expected to come on stream in late 2013.

($1 = 0.82)

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By: Judith Wang
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