29 October 2013 11:42 [Source: ICIS news]
SHANGHAI (ICIS)--Japanese chemical producer Mitsubishi Chemical is on track to permanently shut its 392,000 tonne/year No 1 naphtha cracker at Kashima in May-June 2014, while it will expand its 489,000 tonne/year No 2 naphtha cracker at the same site next year, a company source said on Tuesday.
The mothballing of the No 1 cracker is part of the company's structural reform plans to cut costs against a backdrop of overcapacity in the country and weak derivative demand, particularly from the polymer sector.
The No 2 cracker will have a 45-day turnaround in June next year and the ethylene capacity will be raised by around 50,000 tonnes/year, the source told ICIS.
Mitsubishi Chemical had earlier said that it planned to expand the No 2 cracker to provide a structure that is better equipped to respond to the trend towards higher performance and value-added petrochemical products.
Separately, Asahi Kasei and Mitsubishi Chemical are slated to rationalise their cracker operations in Mizushima by 2016, the source said.
Asahi Kasei’s 500,000 tonne/year naphtha cracker is expected to be shut eventually while Mitsubishi Chemical’s cracker at the site, which has a similar ethylene capacity, will continue running, the source added.
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