Japan’s JGC Corporation has been awarded a project to conduct a feasibility study for expansion of the refinery and chemicals complex in Rabigh by Saudi Aramco and Sumitomo Chemicals. The study for expansion of the US$10 bln (SAR 37.5 mln) Rabigh Refining and Petrochemical Company (Petro Rabigh) is to be concluded by Q3-2010. Investment outlay could total US$3.1-5.1 bln, partly to be funded by the two parent companies and partly by borrowings from a group of banks.
Output from the Rabigh II Project will be a diverse range of petrochemicals that are currently not produced in Saudi Arabia, to complement and strengthen the position of Petro Rabigh as a major producer of refined products, petrochemical and specialty chemicals. As part of the expansion, capacity increase of the existing ethane cracker is being mulled to take in an additional 30 million cubic ft/day of feedstock ethane, along with building a new aromatics complex using 3 mln tpa of naphtha as feedstock. The upgrade also includes adding a 200,000 bpd vacuum distillation unit, a 92,000 bpd catalytic cracking unit and a 26,000 bpd alkylation unit.
An ethane cracker will produce 1.25 mln tpa of ethylene and a gas plant will produce 900,000 tpa of propylene, feedstocks for petrochemical production.