Shell Singapore’s olefins, PO, MPG, polyols under force majeure

04 October 2011 07:48  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Shell’s force majeure in Singapore covers ethylene, propylene and other downstream products such as propylene oxide (PO), polyols and monopropylene glycol (MPG), following last week’s fire at its manufacturing site in Bukom Island, market sources said on Tuesday.

Shell had issued a statement on 2 October, confirming that a force majeure has been declared to some customers, without providing further details.

“We are not able to comment further as this is commercially sensitive information,” a spokesperson from Shell said in an e-mailed statement on Tuesday.

The company’s cracker at the site that can produce 800,000 tonne/year of ethylene (C2) and 450,000 tonnes/year of propylene (C3), is currntly running, market sources said.

Meanwhile, Shell produces 425,000 tonnes/year of PO, 70,000 tonnes/year of MPG and 220,000 tonnes/year of polyether polyols at four different production units at the neighbouring Jurong Island. These plants derive their feedstocks from the cracker.

The force majeure on PO, MPG and polyols was declared on 30 September and is expected to last a month, market sources said.

Supply of monoethylene glycol (MEG) was also covered under the force majeure, according to market sources. Shell has a 750,000 tonne/year MEG facility at Jurong Island.

The operating status of the downstream plants is currently unclear.

On 28 September, Shell’s Bukom manufacturing facilitiy caught fire that took 30 hours to completely extinguish, and forced the shutdown of its 500,000 bbl/day refinery at the site.

The refinery at Bukom, Singapore, is the company’s largest in terms of crude distillation capacity.

On Tuesday, a Shell spokesperson said that the “damage was contained to the vicinity of the pump-house” of the refinery and that “other facilities and units at Bukom are not affected”.

The company is still in the process of progressively shutting down the rest of the refinery units as a safety precaution, the spokesperson said in an e-mailed statement.

Some 90% of Shell’s production out of Bukom is being exported.

Additional reporting by Peh Soo Hwee, Chan Jingyi and Felicia Loo

By: Nurluqman Suratman

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