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Chexpress - May 19, 2011

North America


Enterprise Products Partners L.P. plans to expand its polymer grade propylene (PGP) fractionation facility at the partnership’s Mont Belvieu, Texas complex, which will add approximately 7,500 barrels/day of incremental PGP production. The expansion is expected to be in service in the first quarter of 2013.

New PET Plant

The M&G Group is planning to build a next-generation technology PET plant in the United States, co-located and fully integrated with a new PTA plant at the same site. Approximately 250 jobs will be created at the plants, with an additional 700 indirect positions and 3,000 jobs during construction. The new PET single-line plant will have a capacity of 1,000 kt/year. The PTA unit will have a capacity of 1,200 kt/year and will provide full upstream integration for all of M&G’s U.S. PET capacity. The new plants will be located in the Southern U.S. and final candidates for selection have been reduced to sites in Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana. A final selection of the location and of the PTA technology is expected to be announced by the end of June and construction time for both plants is estimated to be 30 months.

Plant Complete

Curtiss-Wright Flow Control Company completed the construction of its $36-million manufacturing facility in Chambers County, Texas. The Cedar Crossing facility builds large vessels and equipment for the refining and petrochemical industries and supports production of large valve products for the severe service process industries. The new facility covers over 12 acres of property and includes a 118,000-square-foot manufacturing area. Key features include one of the largest, fully enclosed blasting and paint facilities in the U.S., refractory installation, superior material handling and convenient barge transportation.

Contract Renewal and Expansion

The Shaw Group has renewed a contract with Albemarle Corp. to provide maintenance, engineering, construction, reliability, operations and other labor services at Albemarle’s specialty chemicals manufacturing locations in Arkansas, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Texas. Shaw will also provide services to Albemarle’s Michigan plant starting in May 2011.

Contractor Named

Sasol has selected S&B Engineers and Constructors as its Engineering, Procurement and Construction management (EPCm) contractor to construct its recently announced ethylene Tetramerization plant in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The plant will use Sasol’s proprietary technology to convert ethylene to 1-octene and 1-hexene.

Biofuel Projects

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Department of Energy will invest $47 million over three years in eight pilot-scale R&D projects to make biofuels and other products from various biomass sources. The funding is part of the Obama Administration’s plan to bring down oil prices and reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. Most of the awardees are located in rural areas and will individually receive funds between $5 million and $7 million.


FEED Contracts

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) and affiliates of ExxonMobil Chemical have awarded Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) contracts for the proposed new elastomers project at the Al-Jubail Petrochemical Company (KEMYA) joint venture petrochemical plant. FEED contracts were awarded to Jacobs Engineering Inc. and Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding for process units and to Fluor Transworld Services Inc. for associated support facilities.

Adhesives Plant

H.B. Fuller Co. has opened its first reactive adhesives plant in Nanjing, China. The plant will make urethanes and other reactive chemistries for customers in the construction, filter, flexible packaging, solar, textile, window and woodworking industries.

Long-term Partnership

BASF has awarded Technip an Engineering Partner Umbrella Service Contract for chemical and petrochemical projects. Both companies are contemplating a long-term partnership, which will provide BASF access to the extensive resources of Technip for its capital investments, in Europe and other regions. The scope of work encompasses various kinds of services from studies, basic and detail engineering up to project implementation services. Technip’s operating center in Duesseldorf, Germany will coordinate the performance of the services under the umbrella agreement.


BP took a step toward solving a blocked Arctic exploration deal when it said it was open to sign the contract with Russia’s Rosneft through its unit TNK-BP, giving up on its earlier claim to participate directly. Alfa-Access-Renova, the British oil company's partner in the TNK-BP Russian joint venture, had objected to BP's agreement with Rosneft to look for oil in Arctic waters, and won a court order in Britain blocking the deal. AAR claims BP is contractually obliged to pursue all its deals in Russia through TNK-BP. BP said an arbitration panel has now cleared the way for it to open negotiations with Rosneft about assigning BP's half of the Arctic exploration deal to TNK-BP, resolving the dispute.


Elan has agreed to sell Elan Drug Technologies to Alkermes in a deal valued at roughly $960 million. Alkermes will move its headquarters to Dublin, Ireland, where Elan is already based. Elan has been trying to overhaul itself for several years. It plans to use the proceeds from the sale to Alkermes to pay down debt. For Alkermes, the combination means its portfolio will expand to five products, each boasting a long patent life.


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