MOSCOW (MRC) -- ExxonMobil and SABIC have announced that their joint venture, Gulf Coast Growth Ventures located near Corpus Christi, Texas, has reached mechanical completion of a monoethylene glycol (MEG) unit and two polyethylene (PE) units, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.
Project startup is expected to begin ahead of schedule, likely in the fourth quarter of 2021.
“Gulf Coast Growth Ventures is a key development of our plan to serve growing demand for our high value performance products,” said Karen McKee, president of ExxonMobil Chemical Company. “This is truly a best-in-class project, as demonstrated in schedule acceleration and cost competitiveness, despite the many challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“We are very proud to bring GCGV one step closer to operations,” said Abdulrahman Al-Fageeh, SABIC’s executive vice president of petrochemicals. “Not only are we ahead of schedule, but we have executed this project with the highest commitment and emphasis on safety with nearly 18 million safe person-hours worked, all while acting on the promises we made to the community when we started this journey four years ago.”
The project, which includes a 1.8 million metric ton ethane steam cracker, is expected to be delivered under budget and approximately 25% less than the average cost of similar projects along the US Gulf Coast. When completed, GCGV will produce 1,100 kilotons of MEG and 1,300 kilotons of PE per year.
As MRC wrote previously, a little more than two years after announcing it had selected San Patricio County as the site for its new ethylene cracker plant, ExxonMobil and Saudi Basic Industries Corp. celebrated the groundbreaking for the new facility (September 2019).
MEG is commonly used in the manufacturing of polyesters and automotive coolants, and as a building block to create various forms of high-performance plastics. PE is commonly used in protective film, packaging and bottles and containers that prolong the shelf-life of food and medicines, as well as in various automotive parts that improve fuel efficiency and performance, and in medical applications.
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 953,400 tonnes in the first five months of 2021, which virtually corresponded to the same figure a year earlier. High denisty polyethylene (HDPE) shipments decreased.
ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world's energy.
Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) ranks among the world's top petrochemical companies. The company is among the world's market leaders in the production of polyethylene, polypropylene and other advanced thermoplastics, glycols, methanol and fertilizers.