07 October 2013 17:46 [Source: ICIS news]
BERLIN (ICIS)--Saudi Arabian petrochemicals major SABIC will make a decision on developing a new cracker in the US by the end of 2014, company vice chairman and CEO Mohamed Al-Mady, said on Monday.
Speaking to ICIS at the 47th annual European Petrochemical Association (EPCA) meeting, Al-Mady said that discussions with potential partners are underway, and several sites are being looked at, in order to capitalise on cheap US feedstock derived from shale gas.
“We are studying different opportunities in the United States with a few companies and different sites based on shale gas. It takes time of course," he said.
“But [we] cannot announce something [yet]. There is good discussion with people we appreciate working with. I am sure once we are together with our future partners this will be announced. But now it is only at discussion stage," Al-Mady said.
“We should have come up with one or two opportunities [in the US] by the end of 2014," he added.
Al-Mady said the cracker would be used to serve already established markets in the US and in South America, and would replace product it supplies from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
“We are a purely chemical company. We are not integrated upstream and not influenced via upstream. We are at liberty to seek out any feedstock wherever it exists in the world and this a really nice flexibility.
“That means can invest on a global scale, close to the market, close to our customers and we think the future is going to be adding value to the materials we produce, we cannot stop at commodity, we need to go beyond that to reach end-market solutions to our customers," he said.
However, Al-Mady made it clear that although shale gas is a game changer, it does not mean the end of crude or natural gas around the world. "We will continue using everything from raw materials that exist," he said.
The annual EPCA meeting runs from 5-9 October.
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