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13. January 2019

QATAR: Qatar mulls Middle East’s biggest ethane cracker

Qatar plans to build the Middle East’s biggest ethane cracker and an update on this will be provided in 2019, Minister of State for Energy Affairs Saad Sherida al-Kaabi said on Sunday (16 December 2018). When Gulf Times sought an update on the project, planned to be set up at Ras Laffan, al-Kaabi said, “The announcement will be made in the first half of 2019.”

Earlier, QP said the ethane cracker will be part of a new world scale petrochemicals complex at the Ras Laffan Industrial City. The petrochemicals complex will include an ethane cracker with a capacity of more than 1.6 million t/y of ethylene, making it the "largest ethane cracker" in the Middle East, and one of the largest in the world. The petrochemicals complex will also include world-class derivative plants, which will consolidate Qatar’s position among the leading petrochemicals producers in the world markets.

At a media event at Qatar Petroleum earlier this month, al-Kaabi noted, “Qatar would make a big splash in the oil and gas business soon. Doha would also build the Middle East’s biggest ethane cracker, an industrial facility, which converts gas to by-products such as adhesives and ethylene for plastics.” When the North Field expansion project is completed and all four new trains are online, Qatar’s LNG production capacity will reach 110 million t/y. This will increase Qatar’s total production capacity from 4.8 million to 6.2 million barrels of oil equivalent per day.

The new capacity increase will further strengthen Qatar’s leading position as the world’s largest LNG producer and exporter and will further boost QP’s strategic growth plan. This production addition will have a great impact on Qatar’s economic growth and will help stimulate the country’s local economy, QP said. Separately, Qatar News Agency reported that QP has invited a group of leading international companies, with extensive experiences in the petrochemicals industry, to submit proposals for partnering with QP in the development and operation of a new world-scale Petrochemicals Complex at Ras Laffan Industrial City.

Source: Daily “Gulf Times”, Doha; 16 Dec 2018
(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)

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