Petron Corp., the country’s largest oil refiner, is completing the USD 100 million expansion of its polypropylene plant that would propel it to become the top producer of resin by 2020. The oil firm is expanding its polypropylene plant which is scheduled for completion by the end of the year, Petron president and CEO Ramon Ang said. According to Ang, the company invested USD 100 million to raise the plant’s rated capacity of up to 160,000 t/y to 220,000 t/y.
“The expansion is ongoing, and by the end of the year, it will be 220,000 MT (metric tons) in annual capacity,” Ang said. The project will provide Petron with higher margins for smaller volumes. “With this, we are that much closer to realizing our vision to become the country’s leading producer of resin by 2020,” Petron said in its annual report. Last year, the oil firm was able to reach its highest output in its polypropylene plant at 160,000 tons, significantly higher from the previous year’s 115,000 tons. This was achieved with the development of polypropylene products and three new product grades suitable for hot-filled containers, food containers, and high-speed fiber manufacturing machines, it said.
In 2010, Petron acquired a 40 percent stake in Petrochemical Asia (HK) Ltd. (PAHL) which owns Philippine Polypropylene Inc. (PPI), which in turn runs a polypropylene plant in Mariveles, Bataan. The oil firm increased its stake to 45.9 percent in 2012 when it converted certain loans it had extended to PAHL to additional equity. Petron took over the operations of the polypropylene plant in 2014 and increased its interest in PAHL to 100 percent in 2016. PPI has a propylene off-take agreement with Petron to receive feedstock from the latter propylene recovery unit (PRU) in its refinery in Limay, Bataan.
Source: Daily “The Philippine Star”, Manila; 27 May 2019
(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)