Exxon Mobil, Saudis to build petrochemical plant in Texas
Linus Unah – Fourth Estate Contributor
Houston, TX, United States (4E) – Exxon Mobil Corp. and Saudi Arabia’s chemical company Saudi Basic Industries Corp have announced that they are working together to build a large petrochemical complex on the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Exxon Mobil said its chemical unit and the Saudi Basic Industries Corp., known as SABIC, have selected a site in San Patricio County, Texas for the joint venture.
The proposed multibillion dollar investment would include a world-scale ethane steam cracker capable of producing 1.8 million tonnes of ethylene per year, according to Exxon.
The plant is expected tofeed a monoethylene glycol unit and two polyethylene units.
The proposed project, one of 11 ExxonMobil announced as part of its 10-year, $20 billion increasing commitment in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico is expected to create thousands of jobs during the construction phase, as well as 600 new, full-time jobs and 3,500 indirect jobs during operations.
“Texas has shown the business world that our state is the place where innovation and ingenuity thrive,” Texas Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement. “This record-breaking project illustrates that our business climate is exactly what leading and growing companies are seeking when investing in their future.”
It is also expected to generate more than $22 billion in economic output during the construction phase and more than $50 billion in economic output during the first six years of operations, the company said.
“This decision represents a significant milestone for both the local community and the state of Texas,” said Neil Chapman, president of ExxonMobil Chemical Company. “We will continue listening to local residents and businesses and look forward to continuing to work together.”
With site selection completed, ExxonMobil and SABIC will now apply for the necessary air and wastewater permits from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Each company will make a final decision on the investment after the required permits have been granted.
“We are focused on geographic diversification to supply new markets,” said SABIC vice chairman and CEO Yousef Abdullah Al-Benyan.
“The proposed venture would capture competitive feedstock, capitalize on the growing global demand for ethylene-based products, and reinforce SABIC’s strong position in the value chain.”
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