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Aromatics become ever-more challenging

Aromatics, Projects
By John Richardson on 07-May-2008

If the refining industry is the tail that certainly does not wag the dog of oil exploration, where does that leave aromatics? Quite probably, the flea on the coat of the dog.

And it gets ever-more complicated and the risks keep multiplying for the industry

What would be the effect on aromatics if the Goldman Sachs prediction of $200/bbl crude over the next two years becomes true?

Benzene could face the twin squeeze of even higher feedstock costs and a big slug of new capacity.

The waning interest in biodiesel in Europe and ethanol in the US could also have implications for aromatics supply.

Perhaps in the case of the US, mixed xylenes and toluene supply won’t end up being as long as had been predicted if there is a retreat from ambitious targets to boost ethanol production.

These are the kind of issues that will be examined during the DeWitt Asian Aromatics Conference in Singapore on 25-26 May.