Design funded for Sinopec refinery expansion

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, July 8 -- China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (Sinopec) and units of ExxonMobil Corp. and Saudi Aramco agreed to finance the design work for a possible $3.5 billion expansion of a Sinopec refinery in southern China's Fujian Province.

The proposed project also calls for the addition of a chemicals complex. In addition, ExxonMobil, Sinopec, and Saudi Aramco plan to conduct a joint feasibility study into a possible marketing joint venture.

The design agreement, signed in Beijing July 8, includes initial engineering and design, contractor selection, and finalization of cost estimates. Upon design conclusion, the parties will decide whether to proceed with project construction.

The proposed Fujian integrated project would expand the capacity of Sinopec's Fujian refinery to 240,000 b/d from 80,000 b/d, with significant product upgrading capability. The upgraded refinery will be designed to refine and process sour Arabian crude.

In addition, the project calls for construction of an 800,000 tonne/year ethylene steam cracker, polyethylene and polypropylene units, and a 700,000 tonne/year paraxylene unit.

If the project proceeds, completion is slated for first half 2008. Sinopec and the Fujian government would own 50% while ExxonMobil and Saudi Aramco each would own 25%.


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