Exclusive: Saudi opts for liquid feedstock

Oil minister reveals cheap ethane feedstock will not be used

The Petro Rabigh complex was recently inaugurated
The Petro Rabigh complex was recently inaugurated

Future petrochemicals projects in Saudi Arabia are to be based on liquid feedstock rather than cheap ethane feedstock, Saudi oil minister Ali Al-Nuaimi has told ArabianOilandGas.com.

“We will be using liquid feedstock in our petrochemicals projects,” said Al-Nuaimi during the inauguration of the Petro Rabigh complex.

Al-Nuaimi added that the country is determined to go ahead with the integrated complex, which includes a refining and petrochemical complex operating at the same time.

Ethane feedstock allocation in Saudi Arabia has been stopped since 2007, when Sipchem was the last company to receive ethane gas.

Feedstock allocations in the Kingdom are expected to be reviewed in 2011, and speculation has been mounting that the new prices will be at around $1.15 per million btu.

Petro Rabigh was the first petrochemical plant operated by Saudi Aramco and is a joint venture between Aramco and Japan’s Sumitomo Chemical.

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