27 March 2011 16:08 [Source: ICIS news]
By John Baker
SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS)--With petrochemical fortunes recovering strongly in ?xml:namespace>
Dennis Seith, CEO of INEOS Olefins & Polymers USA, says: “We are undertaking engineering studies to debottleneck ethylene capacity at Chocolate Bayou in
This would meet the needs of INEOS’s commitments to the US Gulf Coast merchant ethylene market, while also supporting the company’s high-density polyethylene (HDPE) unit at its
“The expansion is currently being considered”, Seith said in an interview ahead of the International Petrochemical Conference (IPC), but he believes the cost structure at the highly integrated site is at a good point for further investment.
INEOS operates two crackers at its Chocolate Bayou, complex, with combined capacity of 1.70m tonnes/year. Downstream it operates 950,000 tonnes/ year of HDPE capacity at
It also has 815,000 tonnes/year of polypropylene (PP) capacity, at Chocolate Bayou,
The cracker debottleneck would follow swiftly on the heels of a recent expansion in acrylonitrile (ACN). INEOS added a fourth reactor in late 2009 at its
INEOS is also building a major waste-to-bioethanol plant in
Seith is optimistic for the market overall. “Things have turned out better than expected”, he notes. The much publicised growth in global ethylene supply, from the wave of new capacities in the Middle East and
As a result, operating rates have not dipped as low as they might have and now the recovery, with global GDP advancing by 3.9% last year, is driving petrochemical demand further.
Globally, Seith sees ethylene demand growing by 5%/year in the near term. In
“Today, the US cost position is very good, based on low cost ethane and highly productive capacity – surpassed only by the Middle East and Canada”, notes Seith. The low value of the dollar is also helping exports and he points out that the latest figures for 2010 show the
Hosted by the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), the IPC continues through Tuesday.
For more on INEOS visit ICIS company intelligence
For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.
Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.
|ICIS news FREE TRIAL|
|Get access to breaking chemical news as it happens.|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX)|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX). Download the free tabular data and a chart of the historical index|