Thai PTT starts feasibility study on $27bn Vietnam petchem project

23 May 2013 06:50  [Source: ICIS news]

By Pearl Bantillo

Thai PTT studying feasibility of investment in VietnamSINGAPORE (ICIS)--Thailand’s PTT Group has started a feasibility study on its proposed $27bn (€21bn) refinery and petrochemical project in Vietnam after securing approval from the Vietnamese government, a company spokesperson said on Thursday.

“We will do the detailed feasibility study on the scheme – what is the optimal design [of the project], what units will be included in the complex and the refinery and petrochemical capacity,” Pirada Dokangkab, spokesperson for PTT’s downstream business, told ICIS.

The feasibility study will take up to six months to complete, Dokangkab said.

The project, which will be built at Binh Dinh province of Vietnam, will include a 600,000 bbl/day refinery and is expected to produce 3.7m tonnes/year of aromatics and 6.5m tonnes/year of olefins.

“We were already informed of the Vietnamese government’s approval. We are waiting for the official letter – it should probably come before the end of the month,” Dokangkab said.

PTT expects project construction to start in 2016, with the start-up scheduled three years later.

The group will initially fully own the project but will open to entry of strategic partners in the project, the PTT spokesperson said.

The Vietnam project is almost five times the size of the one being worked out in Indonesia, under PTT’s flagship petrochemical firm PTT Global Chemical (PTTGC).

PTTGC and Indonesian state-owned energy firm Pertamina have agreed to build a joint petrochemical project in Indonesia that is estimated to cost $4bn-5bn.

The Indonesian project, which will include a 1m tonne/year naphtha cracker, is expected to start up in 2017.

“We foresee the ASEAN [Association of southeast Asian Nations] will be the basis for Asian growth so we are looking at suitable places for investment,” the Dokangkab said, referring to the PTT Group’s aggressive expansion in the region.

ASEAN comprises Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

($1 = €0.78)

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

By: Pearl Bantillo
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