Riyadh -- Raw materials for making polyurethanes are on a shopping list being put together by SABIC (Saudi Basic Industries Corp.), the major Saudi Arabian petrochemicals concern, as it moves into a further phase of development.
Handelsblatt, the German newspaper, gives details of the move in a 13 Sept report, indicating that the firm also has synthetic rubber and nylon materials in mind as it aims to move from its present focus on more basic petrochemicals and plastics.
The move could include acquisitions or partnerships, the report indicates, following an interview with SABIC's ceo Mohamed Al-Mady.
Handelsblatt reports that, since 2002, the group has invested nearly $15 000 million in acquisitions, including the petrochemicals business of DSM, with a large plastic plant in Gelsenkirchen, parts of the Huntsman group and, in 2007, the polycarbonate business of GE Plastics, which it has continued as Sabic Innovative Plastics (SIP).
SABIC is already one of the largest petrochemical producers in the world, with $28 000 million in sales last year, 33 000 employees and the highest market capitalization in the chemical industry. Its unrivalled access to both cheap oil and natural gas, could allow the company to become a significant force in the new markets in the months and years ahead.