Qapco launches $247m project
Doha, January 9, 2008
Qatar's plans to become the top petrochemical producer got a boost with the inauguration of the QR900 million ($247.16 million) Qapco Ethylene Expansion (EP2) project.
Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani formally opened EP2, which would increase Qatar Petrochemical Company's (Qapco) annual ethylene production capacity to 720,000 tonnes from existing 525,000 tonnes.
Ethylene has a huge demand worldwide, especially in emerging markets such as China, India and Turkey, and is used generally as a feedstock in manufacturing different plastics and thermoplastic downstream products.
EP2 was commissioned in July last year and the first shipment of ethylene was dispatched to India’s Finolex Industries in October, 2007.
The ethylene production boost Qapco realised through EP2 would help it meet the product requirements of its associate – Qatar Vinyl Company (QVC).
Excess ethylene would be exported to the international market and also utilised in Qapco’s new low-density polyethylene derivative plant (LDPE-3) of 250,000t annual capacity for which the technology license was signed in April, 2007. Total Petrochemicals of France has a 20 per cent stake in EP2.
The engineering procurement and construction (EPC) contract for EP2 was signed in March, 2004 and awarded to Japan Gas Company (JGC) Middle East. The detailed engineering and design and site supervision was sub-contracted to CTCI of Taiwan.
The basic engineering was prepared by Stone & Webster for the ethylene cracker, while Axens provided technology for hydrogenation units and JGC for the Sulphur Recovery Unit.
CCIC was the local sub-contractor for construction works of the EP2 project, except for the furnace packages which were executed by Q-Con.
EP2 has added a new “cracked gas-recovery train” parallel to existing cracking units with dedicated caustic tower, front-end de-ethaniser and de-ethaniser systems, hydrogenation for acetylene removal and an ethylene splitter.
The EP2 project was executed in compliance to the Project Quality Assurance manual ISO 9001-2000.– TradeArabia News Service