APLA '17: Idesa deems Mexico's Ethylene XXI ramp-up a success

12 November 2017 18:59 Source:ICIS News

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (ICIS)--Grupo Idesa has deemed the ramp-up of Ethylene XXI a success, with utilisation rates ranging above the mid 90s, the CEO of the Mexican-based producer said.

Grupo Idesa and Braskem are partners in the Braskem Idesa joint venture, which operates Ethylene XXI.

It consists of a 1.05m tonne/year ethane cracker, 750,000 tonnes/year of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and 300,000 tonnes/year of low-density PE (LDPE).

Braskem Idesa started up the plant in April 2016, said Grupo Idesa CEO Jose Uriegas. He made his comments on the eve of the APLA Annual Meeting, which began on Sunday.

This year, operating rates have ranged by about 90-97%, Uriegas said. Regarding sales, Braskem Idesa has placed about 60% of the complex's PE in the Mexican market.

The joint venture exported the rest to Europe, the US, Asia and South America, he said. Overall, Braskem Idesa exports to 43 countries, he said.

Braskem Idesa did run into some problems in the second quarter in the form of feedstock availability.

Ethylene XXI received less than what was expected, Uriegas said. However, that situation has been reversed, and the complex received most, if not all, of its ethane from Pemex, its contracted supplier.

Pemex has been very supportive of Ethylene XXI, Uriegas said. He expects that the ethane shortage for the complex has been overcome, and it should remain so in the upcoming months, he said.

The annual meeting runs through Tuesday.

Interview article by Al Greenwood

By Al Greenwood