The scope of works on the three-year contract covers the construction of a 460,000-tonne-a-year (t/y) acetic acid plant, a 50,000-t/y acetic anhydride unit and a 300,000-t/y VAM unit. The US’ Eastman Chemical Company carried out the front-end engineering and design (FEED) on the acetic acid/acetic anhydride unit and will provide its in-house co-production technology, in addition to marketing all of the acetic anhydride production. The US’ DuPont Company will provide the technology for the VAM facility; the FEED has been carried out by the UK office of US-based Foster Wheeler, which is also the overall project management consultant (PMC).In keeping with the recent trend in the local hydrocarbons and petrochemicals sectors, the contract will be awarded on a cost reimbursible basis and converted into lump-sum turnkey (LSTK) once most of the detailed engineering work is complete.

Carbon monoxide (CO) feedstock for the acetic acid plant will be supplied from a 340,000-t/y CO unit, the contract for which was recently awarded to Germany’s Lurgi in a deal worth an estimated $200 million. Saudi Aramco is providing gas feedstock for the CO unit (MEED 17:3:06).