The proposed complex will comprise a normal paraffin (n-paraffin) plant with a capacity of 120,000 tonnes a year (t/y) and a linear alkyl benzene (LAB) plant with a capacity of 70,000 t/y. Much of the n-paraffin is to be used as feedstock for the LAB unit.

ARIC has already secured technology from the US’ UOP, a feedstock agreement with Saudi Aramcoand a Jubail industrial city site allocation from the Royal Commission for Jubail & Yanbu. The company says that both the n-paraffin and LAB are to be marketed in the kingdom and abroad. The FEED package is expected to take six-nine months to complete. Plant commissioning is scheduled for 2004.

Another project, planned for Yanbu, also proposes to produce n-paraffin and LAB. The Saudi Indo Petrochemical Company (Sipco)is a joint venture between Bahrain registered Gulf Petroproduct Companyand local investors. It plans to produce 100,000 t/y of n-paraffin and 80,000 t/y of LAB. Sipco is also seeking to secure UOP licensing for its plant. Both companies maintain the market can support competing n-paraffin and LAB projects (MEED 8:2:02).