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Ineos to invest $2bn in Saudi Arabia
Ineos has has signed a memorandum of understanding with Saudi Aramco and Total of France to build three new plants as part of the Jubail 2 complex in Saudi Arabia, at a cost of $2bn.
A new state-of-the-art 425,000 tonne acrylonitrile plant, will use Ineos’ technology and catalyst, and will be the first plant of its kind in the Middle East when it starts up 2025. Ineos will also build a 400,000 tonne linearalphaolefin (LAO) plant and associated world-scale polyalphaolefin (PAO) facility. These units will be the most energy efficient in the world when they begin production in 2025, claims the company.
The project represents a continuation of Ineos’ growth strategy following the announcement of €3bn investment in a new plant at Antwerp, £1bn investment across the UK, acquisitions in China and capacity increases in the US Gulf Coast, Alabama and Chocolate Bayou facilities.
Commenting on the news, Wood Mackenzie Chemicals Principal Analyst, Patrick Kirby, says: ‘Ineos' business is primarily centred in Europe and the US currently, so this represents a geographical diversification for the company. The new investments will be integrated with the Saudi Aramco and Total joint venture mixed-feedstock steam cracker complex that is expected to be 1.5mn tonnes in size. This will allow for a much wider portfolio of derivatives than previous ethane cracker investments in Saudi Arabia.’
He continues: ‘Mixed-feedstock steam cracking and closer integration of refining and chemical operations in Saudi Arabia represents a wider trend developing in the Middle East and Asia Pacific, as major oil company's look to gain further exposure to the petrochemical industry as transportation fuels are set to decline.’
Jubail 2 development