Third of PVC made by Venezuela’s Pequiven used for ‘petrocasas’

08 August 2012 23:31  [Source: ICIS news]

CARACAS, Venezuela (ICIS)--Venezuela’s Pequiven has earmarked some more than a third of its polyvinyl chloride (PVC) for the country’s “petrocasas” programme, the president of the state-run chemicals producer said on Wednesday.

Saul Ameliach said Pequiven produces 120,000 tonnes/year of PVC. It was devoting some 50,000 tonnes to the petrocasas programme, in which houses made largely of PVC are made for the poor.

 “There is no need to import PVC” for other industrial uses, Ameliach said, maintaining the remaining 70,000 tonnes/year are more than enough to cover other industrial uses in the country.

Ameliach’s statement runs counter to those of industry sources who say Venezuela was importing PVC to address shortages.

Sources said that the imported PVC was supplied to private industry, and the amount would rise as more the cheaper domestic resin is targeted to Venezuela’s subsidised petrocasas.

Plastics group Avipla did not respond to Ameliach’s statements.

Venezuela President Hugo Chavez on Monday inaugurated the third factory to build PVC components for the petrocasas.

Some 8,600 petrocasa kits per year are being manufactured in Venezuela, Ameliach said, up from 7,000 kits last year.

Ameliach said he expects some 30,000 kits will be produced next year. The Petrocasas are assembled using PVC panels, which are then filled with phosphates in a cement-like mix.

The phosphates are a byproduct of petrochemicals’ production, but if the phosphates mix is unavailable, using regular cement as a substitute makes the house cost twice as much.

Also, cement is in short supply in Venezuela after a string of nationalisations.

Author: Carlos Camacho

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