Saudi’s Chemanol to shut methanol and DMF units for 15 days

14 April 2014 03:55 Source:ICIS News

KARACHI (ICIS)--Saudi Arabia’s Methanol Chemicals Co (Chemanol), one of the Kingdom's market leaders in specialty chemicals, will shut down its methanol and dimethyl formamide (DMF) plants for a 15-day unplanned maintenance of the methanol plant’s valve trays of distillation column, it said late on Sunday.

“Methanol Chemicals Company ... will start the non-scheduled shutdown of its methanol plant for a period of around 15 days, from Monday April 14. The non-scheduled maintenance activity will be carried out for the purpose of inspecting valve trays of distillation column to improve the production efficiency of the plant,” the company said in a statement issued to Saudi stock exchange.

“Such activity will result in the shutdown of the dimethylformamide which mainly uses the carbon monoxide (CO) produced by the methanol plant,” it added.

Chemanol manufactures methanol derivatives, such as aqueous and urea formaldehydes, formaldehyde derivatives, super plasticizers and various amino resins.

Its annual production capacity is almost 1m tonnes of formaldehyde, derivatives and other downstream methanol-based products. The company’s methanol capacity of 231,000 tonnes/year is entirely consumed internally to produce the downstream products.

The company said it has taken appropriate measures to ensure that the maintenance does not affect operations of other Chemanol plants.

Chemanol said the financial impact caused by the unscheduled shutdown will be announced after the calculation of all costs.

“The financial impact of the shutdown is hard to be accurately calculated currently due to fluctuation of products prices and inability of the company to determine actual costs of the maintenance works unless the process is entirely completed,” it added.

By Aamir Ashraf