Canada’s Methanex to move idled Cabo Negro methanol unit to US

18 January 2012 07:00  [Source: ICIS news]

Methanex Cabo Negro site near Punta ArenasSINGAPORE (ICIS)--Methanex is planning to relocate one of its idled methanol plants at its Cabo Negro complex in Chile to Louisiana in the US to capitalise on the low natural gas prices available in the region, the Canadian producer said late on Tuesday.

Site-specific engineering has begun and the plant is expected to be operational in the second half of 2014, the company said in a statement.

“The outlook for low North American natural gas prices makes Louisiana an attractive location in which to produce methanol,” said Bruce Aitken, president and CEO of Methanex.

“We have a number of parallel work paths ongoing and expect to make a final investment decision on this project in the third quarter of this year,” Aitken added.

The relocation project will allow the firm to add capacity at a lower capital cost and in about half the time taken to start up a greenfield methanol plant, according to Aitken.

“The timing of this project is excellent: there is strong demand growth for methanol globally and there is little new production capacity being added to the industry over the next several years,” he added.

Methanex has four methanol plants with a combined capacity of 3.8m tonnes/year at the Cabo Negro complex in Chile.

The financial details of the project were not disclosed in the statement.

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By: Nurluqman Suratman

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