INEOS to move ahead with Sinopec venture for China phenol plant

26 January 2011 12:42  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--INEOS plans to move ahead with its joint venture with Sinopec for a 400,000 tonne/year phenol plant in Nanjing, China, the director of the Switzerland-headquartered chemical group said on Wednesday.

The signing of a detailed memorandum of understanding on the plan was expected to be made public soon, moving the project on from the letter of intent, which was signed by INEOS and Sinopec in January 2010, INEOS’s Tom Crotty said.

“The next phase is to turn that letter of intent into a proper memorandum of understanding, which is the next stage before a finished contract. This will describe how [the joint venture] would work, which will then lead to the signing of binding contracts.”

He added: “We hope to make progress during this year in getting everything signed up so that we can start construction in 2012.”

China is a very significant importer of phenol, which means there is already a lot of pent-up demand for the product, according to Crotty.   

The plant is expected to be located in the Nanjing Chemical Industrial Park, in Jiangsu province.

In addition to phenol, the plant will produce 250,000 tonnes/year of acetone, making it the largest plant of its kind in China. It will also manufacture 550,000 tonnes/year of cumene, according to a previous company announcement.

Earlier this month, INEOS signed framework agreements with PetroChina and its parent company, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), related to partnerships in refining, trading and petrochemicals.

For more on INEOS and Sinopec, visit ICIS company intelligence
Read John Richardson and Malini Hariharan’s Asian Chemical Connections blog
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By: Will Beacham
+44 20 8652 3214

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