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Sabic's China project gets going.

Sabic and the Chinese firm Sinopec have laid the foundation for a polycarbonate production complex with annual capacity of 260,000 tonnes in the Tianjin Binhai New Area. The new plant will operate as Phase 2 of a joint project between the two companies where Phase 1 constituted an ethylene plant that has been running for a couple of years. The joint venture is Sinopec Sabic Tianjin Petrochemical Company (SSTPC) with Sabic and Sinopec each having 50 per cent equity share. The Phase 1 project with annual capacity of one million tonnes of ethylene has been in production since January 2010. The new polycarbonate complex has a total investment of RMB11 billion ($1.7 billion) and covers a ground area of 67 hectares. The plant has two sets of phosgene-free production systems, each with annual capacity of 130,000 tonnes, and becomes operational in 2015. It will produce four major classes of polycarbonate including the mixed grade, extrusion grade, optical grade and moulding grade. The project uses the world's leading non-phosgene polycarbonate manufacturing technology which complies with China's national energy saving and carbon emission policy. With advanced equipment, the products are designed to be high tech and high value-added and suitable for a wide range of applications. The plant will play an important role in promoting the development of Tianjin's petrochemical industry and driving economic growth in the Bohai rim region. It will effectively meet market demand for petrochemicals in Asia-Pacific. Huang Xingguo, deputy secretary of the Tianjin branch of the Communist Party of China and Tianjin Mayor, said the latest venture was another big project following the Tianjin ethylene plant and the oil refining projects by Sinopec and Sabic. "It deepens the cooperation between China and Saudi Arabia, accelerates development of the Binhai New Area and is strategically important for the construction of the state-level petrochemical industry base. We will put full efforts to provide quality services and create the environment to safeguard smooth project implementation," he added. Chairman of Sinopec Fu Chengyu remarked: "This project is the fruitful result of the cooperation between Sinopec and Sabic. It is also an important move for Sinopec to adjust our product mix, to elevate our target product market, and expedite change in the ways of economic development. Construction of the complex will further enhance competitiveness and lead China's way in the petrochemical sector. It also brings both parties to form a closer tie in strategic cooperation."

Prince Saud speaking at the ceremony to mark the beginning of construction work at the polycarbonate complex

Prince Saud bin Abdullah bin Thenayan Al Saud, chairman of the Royal Commission of Jubail and Yanbu and chairman of Sabic, said the ground-breaking ceremony was an important milestone for Sabic. "It marks another collaboration we have with Sinopec and our closer connection with the Chinese people. Sabic and Sinopec have shared ambitions of establishing a long-term strategic partnership that will contribute towards enriching the economies of Saudi Arabia and China in the areas of scientific research, technology, reform and product marketing." With the recent growth in industries such as electronics, automotive, information technology and building materials, there has been a significant increase in China in the demand for polycarbonate and other engineering plastics. In 2010, China consumed 1.13 million tonnes of polycarbonate and has a domestic output of 220,000 tonnes only. As China mainly relies on imports of polycarbonate, the product was highest by volume of imports among all engineering plastics. Based on initial estimation, demand for polycarbonate in China will reach 1.78 million tonnes by 2015, an average annual increase of nearly 10 per cent. Zhang Gaoli, member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China's Central Committee, Mohamed Al Mady, Sabic vice chairman and CEO, and Wang Tianpu, vice chairman and president of Sinopec, were among dignitaries who attended the ceremony.

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Publication:Gulf Industry
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:May 1, 2012
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