London – Sibur and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) have started up their joint venture butyl rubber plant in India, Sibur CEO Dmitry Konov confirmed at a 20 Feb press conference in London.
The new 120 kilotonnes per annum (ktpa) facility is located at RIL’s petrochemicals site in Jamnagar, Gujarat - with the Indian company holding a majority (74.9%) stake in the venture.
“The JV plant with Reliance can run at 120ktpa and is based on our own proprietary IIR technology, which we are licencing to the joint venture,” explained Konov.
The partners, he said, will next add a 60ktpa halobutyl rubber production unit at the Jamnagar site, with the halogenation facility currently still in the construction phase.
“Halobutyl rubber will come on-stream by the end of this year or the first quarter of next year, depending on how fast we ramp up,“ reported Konov.
Meanwhile, the JV partners are bringing product from India’s first butyl rubber plant to market – RIL in India and Sibur outside of India.
“Feedback from clients has been consistently positive as the quality of the product fully meets their expectations and needs,” stated the Russian energy and petrochemicals group’s CEO.
With lower operating temperatures and higher yields, “Sibur’s solution polymerisation technology is one of a kind and the most eco-friendly in the world,” Konov further claimed.
The Jamnagar butyl rubber project is one of only few examples of [such] Russian technology [being] exported to foreign markets so far,” he also pointed out.
We will report further on this and related developments within Sibur’s synthetic rubber business in the March/April issue of European Rubber Journal magazine.