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ExxonMobil expands capacity at Singapore facility

Eric Watkins
Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 2 -- ExxonMobil Chemical has completed a 130,000 tonne/year (tpy) capacity expansion at its Exxsol hydrocarbon fluids plant in Jurong Island, Singapore, increasing capacity at the site to more than 500,000 tpy.

The capacity expansion will provide more of ExxonMobil Chemical's Exxsol series of differentiated fluids, and hydrocarbon fluids, including its proprietary Isopar and Solvesso.

Exxsol said the fluids are formulated to meet a diversity of customer needs "in applications such as drilling mud oil, metal working, polymer processing, industrial cleaning, adhesives, coatings, household products and mining."

The new capacity is designed to meet demand in Asia Pacific, which is growing at an estimated rate of 6% a year for differentiated hydrocarbon fluid products.

Increasing demand in Asia Pacific results from strong industrial growth accompanied by rising awareness of health, safety, and environmental issues and the future consolidation of different regulatory requirements under the Globally Harmonized System (GHS).

New petchem complex
Last November, ExxonMobil Chemical Co. said it would build a second petrochemical complex on Jurong Island after completing a detailed study.

The petrochemical project will include a 1 million tpy ethylene steam cracker, two 650,000 tpy polyethylene units, a 450,000 tpy polypropylene unit, a 300,000 tpy specialty elastomers unit, an aromatics extraction unit to produce 340,000 tpy of benzene, an oxo-alcohol expansion of 125,000 tons a year, and a 220-Mw power cogeneration unit.

ExxonMobil awarded the design, engineering, procurement, and construction contract for the steam cracker recovery unit to the Shaw Group, while the contract for the steam cracker furnaces was awarded to Mitsui Engineering and Shipbuilding and Heurtey.

Mitsui Engineering and Shipbuilding has also been awarded contracts for the polypropylene and specialty elastomers units. The contract for the two polyethylene units was awarded to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

The chemical complex, scheduled to come on stream in early 2011, is expected to cost more than $4 billion. The complex —together with ExxonMobil's 605,000 b/d refinery—makes the company Singapore's single largest foreign manufacturing investor.

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