SABIC runs some Saudi Arabia PP plants at reduced capacity

20 March 2012 09:54  [Source: ICIS news]

Saudi ArabiaSINGAPORE (ICIS)--SABIC is currently running some of its polypropylene (PP) plants at Al Jubail and Yanbu, Saudi Arabia, at reduced capacity as propylene feedstock is scarce because of a shortage in ethane gas, a source close to the company said on Tuesday.

SABIC’s ethane gas allocations had been reduced, said the source, but he declined to elaborate.

“Not all PP plants are running at reduced rates. The operating rates vary from plant to plant in the range of 80-100%,” he said.

“Our stock levels are still running very low and we have the intention to raise prices for April shipments as a result, along with the high naphtha prices,” he added.

April PP allocations will likely be as tight as in March, the source said.

SABIC has been running on low inventories because of recent scheduled shutdown and outage at its facilities.

Ibn Zahr’s (Saudi European Petrochemical Co’s) 320,000 tonne/year PP unit was restarted on 17 March after a scheduled week-long turnaround.

The company’s Al Jubail-based units had brief shutdowns in January because of a power outage.

SABIC markets PP from the following plants in the Middle East:



Joint venture details

Nameplate capacity (kt/year)

Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co

Al Jubail

SABIC (35%), Al-Kayan Petrochemical Company (20%), public shareholders (45%)


IBN ZAHR Saudi-European Petrochemical Company

Al Jubail

SABIC (80%), Ecofuel-Italy (10%), Arab Petroleum Investment Corporation APICORP (10%)




YANPET Saudi Yanbu Petrochemical Company


SABIC (50%) joint venture and Mobil Yanbu Petrochemical Company (50%) (an affiliate of ExxonMobil Chemical, USA)


YANSAB Yanbu National Petrochemical Company


SABIC (51%), Public Shareholders (39%), other companies in the Gulf region (10%)


Read John Richardson and Malini Hariharan’s blog – Asian Chemical Connections

By: Ong Sheau Ling
+65 6780 4359

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