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SABIC to exploit US shale boom with new cracker

ICIS News : 10-Apr-13 12:02

LONDON (ICIS)--SABIC is planning to capitalise on cheap US feedstock prices in light of the US shale gas boom by developing at least one new cracker in the country, a spokesperson for the Saudi-based company said on Wednesday.

The company is in talks with partners with a view to investing in one or more projects utilising ethane derived from shale gas as a feedstock, a spokesperson confirmed. SABIC declined to disclose the details of what any crackers would be likely to produce.

The company has been weighing the potential for a new US cracker for over a year, with CEO Mohammed Al-Mady telling ICIS in December 2011 that the company was considering investing in a US cracker either alone or with a partner.

The move reflects the international attention US shale gas is getting, even from market players based in oil-rich regions such as Saudi Arabia, where feedstock costs are relatively low compared to regions such as Asia and Europe.

SABIC also announced earlier this week that it has signed a research agreement with MIT to research and develop new processes for production from unconventional feedstocks such as shale gas.

By Tom Brown
+44 208 652 3214

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