Musab al Mahruqi says the project will account for 50% of his firm's profits
A new polyolefins project has been announced, with a reported annual capacity of one million tonnes of linear low- and high-density polyethylene.
ORPIC, a subsidiary of OMAN Oil Company, used the first Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) conference to announce the $3.6billion (approx. £2.3billion) investment.
The Polyolefin Plastics Arabia Conference, which ended yesterday (May 28), was co-organized by SPE and the Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE), an organization which fosters industrial development in Oman.
With more than 100 conference attendees and two-dozen workshop participants, the event is the latest manifestation of an SPE drive for international expansion of its mission to disseminate plastics knowledge.
ORPIC handles Oman’s refinery and petrochemicals business. The company’s new project will include a steam cracker for production of olefin monomers and polymerization reactors said to have a capacity of one million tonnes. Completion of the project is expected by 2018.
While ORPIC already produces 200,000 tonnes per year of polypropylene, the project will mark the company’s entry into the polyethylene market. Polyolefins will account for 12% of ORPIC’s total sales once the project is on stream and will generate 50% of the company’s profits, according to ORPIC CEO Musab al Mahruqi, who spoke at the conference.
Another highlight of the conference was a panel discussion on the growth and challenges for plastics processors in the Gulf region. “There is a great push from governments in the Gulf countries to enhance the development and growth of the local plastics converting industry,” said SPE CEO Willem De Vos. “This industry is currently dominated by resin producers, but converters require different and special attention.”
The aggressive growth of plastics processing being planned for the Middle East will generate great demand for qualified and capable technical human resources, along with expanded access to plastics engineering knowledge, according to SPE’s new president Jon Ratzlaff. “SPE is an excellent fit for bringing plastics knowledge and professional networking to the region,” he added.