Iran's Mehr Petrochemical changing tack


Iran's Mehr Petrochemical may start producing grades other than film-grade high density polyethylene at its plant due to a shortage of butane-1 feedstock, according to reports.

Mehr Petrochemical has a 300,000 mt/year HDPE plant at Assaluyeh. There are three major grades in HDPE - HDPE film, HDPE injection and HDPE blow molding. Mehr is said to be considering switching to HDPE injection or blow molding production as they consume less butane-1. Mehr's PE plant is apparently running at reduced rates because of the feedstock shortage.

Mehr Petrochemical is a joint venture by National Petrochemical Co. (39 per cent), Singapore Petrochemical Investment Ettehad Co. (58 per cent) and other companies (3 per cent). Singapore Petrochemical Investment Ettehad is a JV with Thailand's PTT Group, Siam Cement Group and Japan's Itochu.

Meanwhile, Iran has exported its first consignment of petrochemical products weighing about 25 thousand tons to Egypt. Director of Petrochemicals Commercial Co. Reza Hamzelou said that the delivery came as part of a recent agreement between the two countries, under which Iran has agreed to export petrochemical products to Egypt, Mehr News Agency reported.

This comes as the two countries agreed earlier in October to resume direct flights between their capitals for the first time in three decades. The first Egyptian plane, carrying Iranian Vice President Hamid Baqaei and his accompanying delegation, landed in Imam Khomeini International Airport — about 30 km southwest of the Iranian capital Tehran — on October 5.

Iran and Egypt have had no diplomatic relations for the past 30 years. Tehran and Cairo broke off diplomatic relations in the wake of Iran's Islamic Revolution in 1979 after the then- Egyptian President Anwar Sadat granted refuge to the deposed Shah of Iran, Mohammad-Reza Pahlavi.

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