Artlant’s PTA plant in Portugal should be on stream by Feb 2012

21 December 2011 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Artlant PTA’s 700,000 tonne/year purified terephthalic acid (PTA) plant in Sines, Portugal, will have saleable product between the end of January and early February 2012, a company source said on Wednesday.

“We are in production mode already. Feedstock is on site... We would expect that, by February, product will be available to be served to customers we have contracts with,” the Artlant source said.

The most recent PTA start-up in Europe was PKN Orlen’s 600,000 tonne/year unit in Wloclawek, Poland, which came up in the second quarter of 2011, rather than at the end of 2010, as originally intended.

“We have completely different technology and weather conditions [to PKN Orlen],” the Artlant source commented.

Testing by Artlant began in the summer of 2011, and there have since been rumours of the plant experiencing difficulties starting up.

The Sines facility’s completion was originally scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2011, as reported in February by ICIS.

The company said its key market is Europe, but added that its target regions also include Africa, the Middle East, India and Brazil.

As part of its restructuring, La Seda de Barcelona (LSB) sold 59% of its stake in Artlant to three Portuguese investment funds in September 2010.

PTA is used as the feedstock in the production of polyester polymers, commonly designated polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and mainly used in the manufacture of packaging for the food industry and in the manufacture of polyester fibres for the textiles market.

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By: Caroline Murray
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