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SK Group-Sinopec JV to start petrochemical production this year

09
Apr '21
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
A joint venture between South Korea’s SK Group and China’s petrochemical corporation Sinopec plans to start producing petrochemicals at its new facilities in China’s Wuhan in the second half of the year. Sinopec-SK Wuhan Petrochemical was established by SK Global Chemical, a subsidiary of SK Innovation, and Sinopec in 2013. Production is projected to increase by 40 per cent once the facilities run at full capacity.

The joint venture announced in 2017 that it would invest 740 billion won ($660.7 million) in building more facilities in Wuhan. In 2019, the company announced it would invest 2.2 trillion won to acquire a refining subsidiary of Sinopec.

The full operation of the facilities will annually produce 3 million tonnes of petrochemical products, including ethylene, polyethylene and polypropylene, which are used to make plastic bottles, fiber and car materials, according to a South Korean newspaper report.

Ethylene production will be the largest among them all, at 1.1 million tons per year—up by 38 per cent compared to now.

The price of ethylene, the basic chemical building block of most plastics, has risen more than 180 percent in almost a year, from $399 in April last year to $1,133 per ton in March. This is partly due to the halt in the production of petrochemical facilities in Texas in February as a result of the cold wave. The global ethylene market has also been growing 4 per cent annually since 2016, according to SK.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

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