NPC feedstock increase

Increasing demand in the Asian region has put pressures on petrochem manufacturers to increase capacity, raising feedstock requirements. PTT Polyethylene is a 19.6 billion baht 50-50 joint venture, scheduled to come online in 2008, with a capacity to produce 485,000 tpa ethylene and 300,000 tpa low-density polyethylene (LDPE). However, NPC, foreseeing increasing demand, has called on PTT to expand the ethylene capacity of PTT Polyethylene to one million tpa. Thailand's National Petrochemical Plc (NPC) expects its parent firm, PTT Plc, to go ahead with a plan to expand the production capacity of their joint venture, PTT Polyethylene - an ethylene cracking project, to meet its rising feedstock requirements. NPC had planned to expand in two downstream projects that needed more ethylene feedstocks. The projects are an ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) venture worth US$130 million with capacity of 120,000 tpa, and ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) production worth US$70 million with capacity of 35,000 tpa.. The 485,000 tpa of ethylene supply from the JV project will be inadequate for the new downstream facilities, part of NPC's strategy to sustain revenue growth in the future, particularly when the prices of the two specialty products are 150% higher than commodity ones. NPC is scheduled to shut down its ethylene plant for one month in May to complete the second phase of debottlenecking, after which its ethylene output will be increased by 25,000 tpa to 460,000 tpa. Propylene production is 120,000 tpa.
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