The $200m facility will have a capacity of 220,000 tonnes a year. It will be fed with ethylene and benzene feedstock produced from the 116,000-barrel-a-day refinery.

ORPC is inviting technology companies to submit proposals by 13 September for the contract to supply proprietary technology to the plant and carry out basic engineering work.

Prospective licensors include CBI Lummus, Dow Chemical Company and UOP, all of the US, and Netherlands-base Lyondell-Basell.

A tender for the engineering, procurement and construction of the plant is expected to be issued to prequalified contractors next year.

Styrene is used in the production of synthetic rubbers such as polystyrene, styrene butadiene rubber and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (MEED 18:8:07).