PIC approaches decision on aromatics complex

07 March 2003
The local Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC)is evaluating proposals from two companies - France's IFP and the US' UOP - to provide the technology for a proposed aromatics complex to be set up at the Shuaiba industrial area (MEED 7:2:03; 22:11:02).

Estimated to cost $1,400 million, the complex will call for the construction of two facilities. The first is a paraxylene plant, which will have nameplate capacity of 700,000 tonnes a year (t/y). The second is a 300,000-t/y-styrene unit.

The US' Bechtel has been selected as project management consultant (PMC) for the proposed new complex.

PIC has signed a memorandum of understanding with the multinational Dow Chemical Company to assist in the setting up of the styrene plant. For the paraxylene complex, PIC plans to bring a local investor on board.

The aromatics complex is part of one of two new greenfield projects planned by PIC. The other project covers an olefins plant with capacity of 850,000 t/y of ethylene, 450,000 t/y of polyethylene and 430,000 t/y of ethylene glycol. Dow will act as foreign partner for the proposed project.

Both projects are targeted to be commissioned by early 2006. International law firm Ashurst Morris Crisp is acting as legal adviser to PIC for the proposed projects.

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