BASF and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (SINOPEC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further strengthen their cooperation by jointly exploring the possibility of building a world-scale isononanol (INA) plant in Maoming Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone, Maoming, China. The final scope of the investment will be determined following the outcome of the joint feasibility study, which is expected by the end of 2012.
Under the terms of the MoU, the two parties will evaluate the technical, commercial and economic viability of jointly owning and operating a world-scale facility for the production of INA under a 50-50 joint venture agreement.
INA is used as the feedstock for the production of next generation plasticizers, e.g. diisononyl phthalate (DINP) and non-phthalate plasticizer Hexamoll DINCH. DINP is widely used as a plasticizer in industrial applications such as automotive, wires and cables, flooring, building and construction while Hexamoll DINCH is the plasticizer of choice for sensitive applications.
The agreement was signed in Shenzhen, China, by Dr. Albert Heuser, President BASF Asia Pacific and Dr. Yu Xizhi, President of SINOPEC Corp. Maoming Company, on July 30.
“As the Chinese market continues its rapid growth with booming demand for plasticizers, the INA investment in Maoming serves the increasing demand for next generation plasticizers. After many years of successful cooperation with SINOPEC, this project builds on our strong partnership and offers an exciting opportunity for BASF in China. Maoming provides excellent integration possibilities into the refinery structure, which will contribute further to the overall environmental and economic efficiency of the project,” said Dr. Albert Heuser, President BASF Asia Pacific.
Dr. Yu Xizhi, President of SINOPEC Corp. Maoming Company commented, “This cooperation not only builds on the valued relationship SINOPEC already holds with BASF, but also goes to highlight the success of SINOPEC’s international partnerships. We are confident that this development will provide an even broader range of chemical products to the South China region, as well as across the country, contributing to a sustainable future.”
BASF and SINOPEC jointly operate BASF-YPC Co. Ltd., a 50-50 joint venture between BASF and SINOPEC in Nanjing, China. As one of China's largest petrochemical joint ventures, the site produces a wide range of high quality chemicals for the rapidly growing Chinese market.