Dow and Saudi Arabian Oil Co. to proceed with US$20 bln petrochemical JV at Jubail

Dow Chemical Co. and Saudi Arabian Oil Co. plan to proceed with a US$20 bln petrochemical plant at the Saudi port of Jubail. The complex will comprise 26 manufacturing units and include a world-scale cracker and production units for polyurethanes (isocyanates, polyether polyols), propylene oxide (PO), propylene glycol (PG), elastomers, linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE), low density polyethylene (LDPE), glycol ethers and amines. The joint venture - Sadara Chemical Co., will have capacity to produce over 3 mln tpa of high value-added chemical products and performance plastics. Sadara’s first production unit will start operating in H1-2015 and the facility will be complete by 2016. About 45% of sales will be to the Asia Pacific region, 25% to the Middle East and 10% to Europe. The venture will make polyurethanes, propylene oxide, propylene glycol, elastomers and polyethylene. The venture will issue about US$13 bln debt and the remaining US$7 bln funding will come from the two partners and an initial public offering in Saudi Arabia.This JV will help Saudi Arabia boost the value of its heavy crude by developing many types of derivatives. Dow will gain access to low-cost raw materials for making petrochemicals. Saudi Arabia has historically charged domestic petrochemical makers 75 cents/mln British thermal units for feedstock ethane -about a sixth of U.S. spot prices. The JV will lay strong emphasis on propylene and its derivatives. The complex will use multiple feedstocks, including heavy liquids, natural gas liquids (NGLs) and ethane.
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