Frontrunners emerge for $500m Sabic project

04 June 2014

Decision expected to be made between Spanish and Taiwanese contractors

Taiwan’s CTCI and Spain’s Tecnicas Reunidas have emerged as the two frontrunners to be awarded an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract for two new petrochemicals plants worth a total of about $500m in Saudi Arabia.

The plants are being tendered by Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) and Japan’s Mitsubishi Rayon Company (MRC). An award is expected to be made in the third quarter of 2014. The two plants will produce methyl methacrylate (MMA) and polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA), and will be built at Jubail in the Eastern Province.

“There are two companies left in the running for this one now, but it is too early to identify a clear favourite,” says a contracting source based in Saudi Arabia.

Tecnicas Reunidas was awarded the deal for the front-end engineering and design (feed) contract for the project in January 2012. The capacity for the MMA facility will be 250,000 tonnes a year (t/y), which will make it the largest of its type in the world. The smaller PMMA plant will have a capacity of 40,000 t/y.

MMA and PMMA have several downstream uses including machinery, electrical components and gears. Both facilities fall in line with Sabic’s move to become a key player in the kingdom’s downstream industries.

Sabic and Lucite International, a subsidiary of MRC, are 50:50 joint venture partners on the project.

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