Sabic: Joint Venture with Mitsubishi Rayon
Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) and Mitsubishi Rayon Company (MRC) have announced the formation of a 50/50 joint venture company, to build and operate two plants – one for Methyl Methacrylate (MMA), and the other for Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) – at one of Sabic’s manufacturing affiliates in Jubail, Saudi Arabia.
The MMA plant will be the largest ever built, with a 250,000-metric-ton annual capacity. It will use Lucite International’s (LI) Alpha technology, which was first commercialised with its Alpha 1 plant which began operation in Singapore in November 2008. LI is a subsidiary of MRC acquired in 2009. The PMMA plant will be based on MRC technology and will have an annual capacity of 40,000 metric tons.
Commenting on the partnership deal, Koos Van Haasteren, Sabic Executive Vice President, Performance Chemicals, said the joint venture operation will be the basis for a strategic entry into the acrylics business.
The MMA/PMMA joint venture will introduce new high-value products, manufactured for the first time in the Middle East. These will diversify materials used in industrial clusters, thus allowing expansion and further diversification in Saudi Arabia’s industrial sector; creating new opportunities in the downstream industries such as construction, automotive, electronics, medical technologies and appliances.
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