SABIC to build US$1 billion plant in China


Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) is aiming to construct a US$1 billion-plus facility with China Petroleum & Chemical Corp (Sinopec) in China.

The project in the eastern port city of Tianjin will have an annual capacity of 260,000 tonnes of polycarbonate and require total investment of more than US$1 billion from SABIC's existing 50/50 venture with Sinopec in Tianjin.

"The project will drive local economic development, satisfy growing demand for polycarbonate in Asia-Pacific and is of significant importance to the Chinese petrochemical industry and local industry in Tianjin," SABIC Chief Executive Mohamed Al-Mady was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Polycarbonate is an essential plastic used to produce a variety of consumer products and industrial components including automotive parts and compact discs.

SABIC's Tianjin joint venture with Sinopec, which started operation in 2010, produces various petrochemical products, including ethylene, polyethylene, ethylene glycol and polypropylene.

The polycarbonate project, for which a memorandum of understanding had been signed by SABIC and Sinopec, was expected to be operational by 2015, SABIC stated.

Petrochemical demand should grow by an annual 20 per cent for the next 10 years in China, the world's second-largest economy.

At the beginning of the year, SABIC stated that it expected higher sales and profitability this year and throughout 2012 as petrochemical prices return to pre-crisis levels and further output capacity was added.

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