Total and Saudi Aramco signed a joint development agreement on Monday for the front-end engineering and design (FEED) of a giant petrochemical complex in Jubail, on Saudi Arabia’s eastern coast.
The complex will comprise a mixed-feed cracker (50 per cent ethane and refinery off-gases) – the first in the Gulf region to be integrated with a refinery – with a capacity of 1.5 million tons per year of ethylene and related high-added-value petrochemical units. The project represents an investment of around $5 billion and is scheduled to start-up in 2024, Total said.
Announced in April 2018, the world-class complex will be located next to the SATORP refinery, operated by Saudi Aramco and Total, who will own 62.5 per cent and 37.5 per cent respectively, in order to fully exploit operational synergies.
The project will provide feedstock to other petrochemical and specialty chemical plants located in the Jubail industrial area and beyond, representing an additional $4 billion investment by third party investors benefitting to the Saudi economy.
The overall complex will represent an investment of approximately $9 billion and is expected to create 8,000 local direct and indirect jobs.
Saudi Aramco chief executive officer Amin Nasser said: “SATORP’s second-phase expansion represents a quantum leap in Saudi Aramco’s downstream strategy to maximise our hydrocarbon resources and help position the Kingdom as a chemicals manufacturing hub, thus supporting economic diversification. The signing will deliver on multiple levels, from high-value fuels and petrochemical products for consumers on three continents to meaningful job creation and local content development. We’re pleased to celebrate with Total this latest milestone in the SATORP journey.”
Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and chief executive officer of Total said: “We are delighted to write a new page of our joint history by launching a new giant project, building on the successful development of SATORP, our biggest and most efficient refinery in the world. This world-class complex also fits with our strategy to expand in petrochemicals by maximising the synergies within our major platforms, leveraging low-cost feedstocks and taking advantage of the fast growing Asian polymer market.”