London -- Shell said 3 May that it has completed its Shell Eastern Petrochemicals Complex (SEPC) project in Singapore, and that this now forms both Shell's largest petrochemicals investment to date and the second world-scale petrochemicals project the company has completed in Asia in four years.
Additional capacity brought on stream by the SEPC project includes:
Ethylene: 800 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa)
Mono-ethylene glycol: 750 ktpa
Propylene: 450 ktpa
Benzene: 230 ktpa
Butadiene: 155 ktpa
Shell said the world scale ethylene cracker "can process a range of feedstocks and this flexibility can help to maximise returns as economics shift between hydrocarbon streams."
In November 2009 the project started up one of the world's largest and most efficient monoethylene glycol (MEG) plants on Jurong Island. This gets feedstock from the nearby cracker, and is now supplying raw materials for the growing packaging and textiles industries in Asia.
According to Shell, completion of this project reinforces the group's intention "to remain a leading player in the expanding Asian petrochemicals market."
"This project clearly demonstrates Shell's strategy to focus on growth markets and to integrate oil and chemicals manufacturing to gain efficiencies," commented ceo Peter Voser, in the company's announcement. "Creating Shell's largest integrated site will bring considerable synergies in terms of feedstocks, operations and logistics. Our ambition is to grow in the dynamic Asian petrochemicals market, where we are already a leading player."
Shell is a major supplier of polyols for the polyurethanes sector, using propylene oxide made using the SMPO (styrene monomer/propylene oxide) process.