MOSCOW (MRC) -- JXTG Nippon Oil & Energy Corp. said it would close its Muroran petrochemical facility in Japan because of fal-ling demand for gasoline in the country, reported Apic-online.
The Muroran facility, which mainly produces feedstock for paraxylene, cumene and gasoline by-product, will discontinue production in March 2019 and will be converted to a terminal for storing and shipping oil products.
Muroran previously included a 180,000-b/d refinery, but was changed to a petrochemicals facility in 2014. The refinery was owned by JX Holdings, which recently merged with TonenGeneral Sekiyu to create JXTG.
Muroran produced 430,000 t/y of the paraxylene feedstock in the year through March 2017, and 160,000 t/y of cumene. The petrochemical products are ex-ported to Ulsan Aromatics in South Korea and JXTG said it will continue to supply Ulsan Aromatics from its other facilities in Japan.
As MRC wrote before, in June 2016, Petronas and JX Nippon Oil & Energy signed an agreement for the sale and purchase of equity in Petronas LNG 9 Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Petronas. Under the agreement, JX NOE will acquire a 10% in-terest in PL9SB, which owns the ninth liquefied natural gas (LNG) liquefaction train within the Petronas LNG complex in Bintulu, Sarawak, Malaysia. The 3.6-million-t/y state-of-the-art train, expected to begin commercial operations in the first quarter of 2017, will increase capacity at the Petronas LNG complex to 30-million t/y.
The Nippon Oil Corporation, or NOC or Shin-Nisseki is a Japanese petroleum company. Its businesses include the exploration, importation, and refining of crude oil; the manufacture and sale of petroleum products, including olefines (ethylene, propylene) and aromatics.