16 July 2013 09:05 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Commercial ammonia and urea production at the new $2bn (€1.54bn) Sorfert Algeria plant will finally get underway next month, parent Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) said late on Monday, adding the inaugural export cargoes should also load in August.
"Sorfert Algérie, a 2 million metric tonne capacity greenfield nitrogen fertilizer complex owned by OCI in partnership with Sonatrach, has restarted operations on train one and has begun commissioning works on train two," OCI said in a short statement.
"Commercial production is expected to commence in August 2013 with exports following suit by the end of the month."
Production at the plant was originally due to commence in 2012 but delays in the issuing of environmental and export permits forced the commissioning to be pushed back.
The facility will produce 800,000 tonnes/year of merchant ammonia and 1.4m tonnes/year of granular urea for export once fully operational. OCI holds a 51% stake in the joint venture, with Algeria's state-owned oil and gas producer Sonatrach possessing the remaining 49% share.
Because of the lower freight costs from Algeria, compared to the key Ukrainian port of Yuzhny, potential destinations for the plant's ammonia output include the US, Latin America, Morocco, Tunisia, northwest Europe, and Asia Pacific countries such as India, Korea, Taiwan and Japan.
($1 = €0.77)
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