Paris - Saudi Aramco and French energy company Total SA have signed a memorandum of understanding to build a “giant petrochemical complex” in Jubail, Saudi Arabia.
The complex will be integrated downstream of the SATORP refinery, a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Total, the French company announced 10 April.
Saudi Aramco owns 62.5% and Total 37.5% of the SATORP JV in Jubail.
The $5bn (€4 billion) investment will comprise a “world-size” mixed-feed steam cracker with a capacity of 1.5 million tonnes per year of ethylene and related high-added-value petrochemical units.
Front-end engineering and design (FEED) is expected to start in the third quarter of 2018.
The cracker will feed other petrochemical and speciality chemical plants representing an overall amount of $4bn (€3.2bn) investment by third party investors.
In total, $9bn (€7.2bn) will be invested, in the project which will produce more than 2.7 million tonnes of high value chemicals.
This project, said Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and CEO of Total, will tap into low-cost feedstock to supply to the “fast-growing Asian polymer market."