By Liz White, UT staffDaya Bay, China-CNOOC and Shell Petrochemicals Co. Ltd (CSPC) marked the successful start of operations of its $4200-million petrochemicals complex at Daya Bay in China, with a ceremony in Guangdong, 31 March 2006.The plant includes a 135 kilotoness per annum polyls plant, with feedstock for the polyols coming from a 550 ktpa styrene monomer and a 250 ktpa propylene oxide plant. In an interview at the UTECH EUROPE 2006 exhibition and conference in Maastricht, the Netherlands, 29 March, Olivier Thorel, global business manager for PO and urethane chemicals with Shell Chemicals Ltd, said polyols production at the Daya Bay site was already up and running. The plant start up has been very smooth, with the polyol plant making on-spec materials, which are already being supplied to customers, said Thorel (pictured).Thorel indicated that the polyol capacity from the Chinese facility, which will supply domestic demand in China, will free some of Shell's global polyol capacity elsewhere, and hence help ease a somewhat tight supply situation in the market. Construction of the Daya Bay complex, owned 50:50 by the CNOOC Petrochemicals Investment Co. Ltd and Shell Nanhai BV, was completed at the end of December last year, with the ethylene plant starting operations 29 Jan.The petrochemicals plant will produce a total of 2.3 million tonnes of products per year. These will be used primarily to supply Guangdong and the high consumption areas of China's southeast coastal economic zones, said Shell's statement on the opening ceremony. Shell Downstream executive director Rob Routs was a guest of honour at the event along with Guangdong executive vice governor Zhong Yangsheng, Huizhou party Secretary Liu Jinzhou, and CNOOC president Fu Chengyu. "