Processing news briefs, May 16

May 16, 2000
Petrogal ... Technip SA ... BASF Sonatrach PropanChem SA ... Lurgi AG ... UOP LLC ... Petroleos Mexicanos SA � Rotork Controls Ltd. � Saudi Basic Industries Corp. ... Thai Fertilizer Marketing Co. ... Chia Tai Co. ... Pakistan's Ibrahim Fibres Ltd. ... Lurgi Zimmer AG

Portugal's Petrogal awarded two contracts to France's Technip SA to revamp three hydrosulfurization units: two at its Sines refinery and one at its Porto refinery. The projects are aimed at producing gas oil that meets the European Union's pending sulfur emission standards. Total investment for the projects will be about 20 million euros. Technip is responsible for basic and detailed engineering, procurement, construction supervision, and start-up assistance. Work on the Porto unit, which will include installation of a new reactor, is due for completion in 13 months. Work on the Sines units�which will involve increasing capacity to 37,000 b/sd from 34,000 b/sd and installing new reactors, compressors, and heat exchangers�is due for completion in 16 months. Engineering services for both projects will be handled by Technip and Lusotecna, Technip's Lisbon affiliate.

BASF Sonatrach PropanChem SA let a turnkey contract to Germany's Lurgi AG for detailed engineering, procurement, and construction of a propane dehydrogenation plant, to be built at Tarragona, Spain. BASF Sonatrach PropanChem is a joint venture of BASF Espa�ola SA (the Spanish unit of Germany's BASF AG) and Sonatrach Petroleum Investment Co. BV (the Dutch subsidiary of Algeria's state petroleum company). The JV licensed UOP LLC's Oleflex process for use in the plant. UOP said the unit will produce 350,000 tonnes/year of polymer-grade propylene starting in early 2002. Sonatrach will supply the propane feedstock from Algeria; propylene will be used by BASF subsidiary Targor.

Contractors for Petroleos Mexicanos SA awarded Rotork Controls Ltd. a $14 million contract to supply electric valve actuators and two-wire control systems for the modernization of Pemex's Cadereyta refinery. The contractors are South Korea's Sunkyong Engineering & Construction, Germany's Siemens AG, and Mexico's Grupo Tribasa. The actuators and control systems will be built at Rotork's factories in the UK and the US.

Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC) signed agreements to supply a total of 600,000 tonnes/year of urea to Thai Fertilizer Marketing Co. and Chia Tai Co., both of Thailand. SABIC Vice-Chairman Mohamed bin Hamad al Madhi said SABIC is now producing 5.5 million tonnes/year of fertilizers, following the completion of expansion projects. SABIC subsidiary Saudi Fertilizers Co. began producing 500,000 tonnes/year of ammonia and 600,000 tonnes/year of urea in 1999. SABIC's two other subsidiaries that produce fertilizers are Al Jubail Fertilizers Co. and National Fertilizers Co.

Pakistan's Ibrahim Fibres Ltd. awarded Lurgi Zimmer AG a contract for construction of a 140,000 tonne/year polyester plant at Faisalabad, Pakistan. The 71 million euro project will be financed through Pakistani banks. It will comprise a continuous polycondensation unit, three staple fiber lines, plus ancillary facilities. The liquid polymer is produced from terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol then spun and processed into staple fiber. Lurgi Zimmer will be responsible for technology licensing, engineering, procurement, construction supervision, and commissioning. Start-up is slated for first quarter 2002. The plant will be adjacent to a polyester plant supplied and commissioned by Lurgi Zimmer in 1997. With the new project, Ibrahim Fibres' staple fiber capacity will be increased to more than 200,000 tonnes/year, making it Pakistan's largest producer.