Thai Olefins to build ethylene glycol plant

By an OGJ Online Correspondent

BANGKOK, Feb. 8�Thai Olefins Co. is planning a 300,000 tonne/year ethylene glycol plant to integrate with its existing Map Ta Phut petrochemical complex at Rayong, Thailand. The company is also looking forward to increased financing this year, both from its parent company and a proposed initial public offering.

The plant is expected to cost $210 million. To build the facility, TOC plans to form a joint venture firm with international companies.

TOC recently awarded Chiyoda Corp. and Halliburton Co. a $140 million contract to build a 300,000 tonne/year ethylene production plant, also at Map Ta Phut (OGJ Online, Jan. 29, 2001).

Meanwhile, TOC expects a new capital injection from the Petroleum Authority of Thailand, which holds 49% of the company, to finance the expansion of the ethylene complex.

Additionally, it expects to raise up to $40 million from an initial public offering of 12-15% of TOC shares, expected in the third quarter, said Pres. Aditheb Bisalbutr. A certain volume of shares would be offered through a private placement at the same time, TOC executives disclosed.

Last September, TOC struck a deal with 15 creditors to restructure its debt (OGJ, May 1, 2000, p. 70). The new terms enable the company to reduce principal repayments by $122 million in the next 4 years and interest by 80 million baht a year. They do not require any write-off or debt for equity conversion.

However TOC's existing shareholders are required to set aside $50 million as "cash deficiency support'' in case the company is not able to pay principal and interest.

Thai Olefins has 8.48 billion baht in registered capital. Other shareholders are Bangkok Polyethylene PLC, 13.76%; Siam Cement PLC, 13.32%; Siam Styrene Monomer, 4.77%; Thai Petrochemical Industry PLC, 6.86%; Vinythai PLC, 5.29%; Bangkok Synthetic Co., 5%; and National Petrochemical PLC, 2%.

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