National Petrochemical Company (NPC)is pressing ahead with evaluating bids on three cracker projects and is gearing up to issue invitation to bid (ITB) documents for a fourth cracker in the fourth quarter (MEED 23:7:04).A contract award is scheduled for September on the 318,000-tonne-a-year (t/y) mixed feedstock cracker at Ilam in the west of the Islamic republic. The bidders are: Paris-based Technipwith the local Nargan; Europe’s ABB Lummus Global, with the local Petrochemical Industries Design & Engineering Company (Pidec); Germany’s Linde, with the local Sazeh Consult; and a European office of the Shaw Group, formerly known as Stone & Webster, with China’s Sinopec. The cracker is scheduled to come on stream in 2008. The NPC board is expected to give the green light before the end of August for the opening of commercial offers on the olefins 8 cracker, which will be located at Arvand Petrochemical Companyin the Petrochemicals Special Economic Zone at Bandar Imam. The bidders for the 1.1 million-t/y ethane cracker project are Technip with Nargan, ABB with Pidec, Linde with Sazeh and Stone & Shaw Group with the local Namvaran Engineers Consultants. Project completion is scheduled for 2008. The same four international companies have also submitted bids to NPC for the olefins 11 ethane cracker, which will have capacity of 1.3 million t/y. According to NPC, prices on the Bandar Assaluyeh-based project are expected to be opened in the fourth quarter. The ITB for olefins 12, set to be the world’s largest cracker at 1.9 million t/y, are due to be released before the end of the year.