Prolonged shutdown of Formosa’s steam cracker to impact FCFC’s polypropylene operations

Shutdown of Formosa Petrochemical Corp's No 1 naphtha-fed steam cracker is expected to impact Formosa Chemicals and Fibre Corp’s polypropylene operations, as per Platts. Uptil now, the h thus far the impact has been minimal, at its three PP lines at Mailiao, each with a capacity of 160,000 tpa. Operations at all three lines have been reduced. FCFC receives propylene feedstock from Formosa’s three naphtha-fed steam crackers at Mailiao. Since the duration of the shutdown of its No. 1 steam cracker is unclear, raw material supplies could be affected. Due to a propylene shortage, sister company Formosa Plastics was forced to shut its 450,000 tpa Ningbo PP plant shortly after the shutdown, and operations at its 400,000 tpa Linyuan PP plant has been slashed to around 30% as of this week. Local authorities ordered the No.1 cracker and six other petrochemical facilities shut for a safety probe after an LPG pipeline fire at the cracker on May 12. The No. 1 steam cracker has capacity to produce 700,000 tpa of ethylene and 350,000 tpa propylene. The No. 2 and No. 3 steam crackers at the same site are running at around 90-95%. The No. 2 steam cracker has capacity to produce 1.03 mln tpa of ethylene and 515,000 tpa of propylene, while the No. 3 cracker is capable of producing 1.2 mln tpa of ethylene and 600,000 tpa of propylene.
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