International engineering firms have submitted their final bids for two of the remaining construction contracts on the multibillion dollar third-phase expansion of the Abu Dhabi Polymers Company (Borouge) Ruwais plastics complex.

The contractors handed in commercial bids, outlining proposed price structures for the deals, on 16 May. They are for two engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts: a polyolefins unit and a low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant.

The polyolefins deal covers the construction of facilities to produce the basic plastics polyethylene and polypropylene. Among the bidders for the deal, which may be worth more than $2bn, are a consortium of the UK’s Petrofac with South Korea’s Daelim; Taiwan’s China Technical Consultants (CTCI); a consortium of Italy’s Tecnimont and South Korea’s Samsung Engineering; and Germany’s Uhde.

Uhde, Tecnimont, CTCI and Daelim are all understood to have submitted bids for the estimated $500m LDPE deal. This EPC contract covers the construction of a specialised plant that will convert the basic plastic polyethylene produced at the first unit into LDPE, a plastic used to make piping.

Contractors and sources working on the project were not able to give details of the individual prices submitted.

Borouge is still in the process of tendering two other deals on the project. The first is for the supporting infrastructure for the expansion, known as the offsites and utilities, and is estimated to be worth more than $1bn. Commercial bids are due in on 23 May. The second is worth around $200m, and covers the construction of another specialist plastics plant, which will produce cross-linked polyethylene, used in tubing. Borouge plans on tendering an EPC contract to build this plant in May.

In July 2009, the company awarded a $1.07bn deal to Germany’s Linde to design and build a 1.5-million tonne a year (t/y) cracker unit to break down ethane, a component of natural gas, into ethylene, while the local Al-Asab General Transportations and Contracting Establishment won a $300m deal to prepare the Ruwais site for the expansion in November 2009 (MEED 6:7:2010).

The Borouge 3 project will boost the firm’s plastics production at Ruwais by 2.5 million tonnes a year (t/y) to 4.5 million t/y, making it the largest complex of its kind in the world. 

The company is currently in the process of commissioning its second production unit, Borouge 2, which will produce 540,000 t/y of polyethylene and 800,000 t/y of polypropylene. It currently produces around 600,000 t/y of polyethylene at Ruwais.