Colombia’s Propilco to build on-purpose propylene plant

24 August 2012 21:50  [Source: ICIS news]

MEDELLIN, Colombia (ICIS)--Colombian polypropylene (PP) producer Propilco will build a propane dehydrogenation (PDH) plant for the production of propylene feedstock, an executive said on Friday.

“Our plans to build a PDH plant are in a mature stage. Initial studies have been approved,” said Sebastian Zapata, Propilco’s vice-president of planning and strategy.

“Propilco is now open to explore partnerships or a joint venture (JV) for this project,” he said. “If things go to plan, the plant should be operational by mid-2016.”

The plant, which will be in the Atlantic coastal city of Cartagena, will have an annual propylene production capacity of 300,000 tonnes, Zapata said.

Zapata estimates that Propilco will use 240,000 tonnes of total production. The remainder will be earmarked for export.

Ecopetrol, which acquired Propilco in 2008, currently supplies Propilco with 35% of its propylene feedstock requirements.

By 2016, this figure is set to jump to 60%, with Propilco’s new PDH plant supplying the remaining 40%, Zapata said.

“By 2016, Propilco will be 100% self-reliant on our feedstock requirements,” he added.

Propilco is currently Colombia’s only producer of PP.

By: Simon West

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