By Malini Hariharan
There is finally some movement at Petronas. After last month's joint announcement with BASF on a study for a Euro1bn investment in speciality chemicals, news has emerged that the Malaysian major is also exploring the feasibility of a new petrochemical complex at Kerteh.
The complex would have a 1m tonnes/year ethane cracker and downstream polymer plants, reports ICIS news.
It would include a polyethylene (PE) plant and a polypropylene (PP) unit, said a source close to the company. A second source said the plants would have a capacity of at least 400,000 tonnes/year.
Petronas currently operates two crackers at Kerteh with a total capacity of 1m tonnes/year.
Pic source: Petronas
The sources did not disclose more details about the project and Petronas was also not available for an official comment.
But the information is interesting as Petronas had disclosed in the prospectus issued for its subsidiary Petronas Chemical that it was studying a petrochemical project downstream of a refinery in peninsular Malaysia.
But with gas said to be available on the east coast it makes sense to first examine the feasibility of an ethane cracker